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Corneal inflammation and epithelial growth capacity are related to the pathology of the delayed lesion following ocular SM exposure in the rabbit

TitleCorneal inflammation and epithelial growth capacity are related to the pathology of the delayed lesion following ocular SM exposure in the rabbit
Publication TypeConference Proceedings
Year of Conference2006
AuthorsAmir A., Dachir S., Cohen L., Cohen M., Gutman H., Shalem Y., Brandeis R., Kadar T.
Conference NameProceedings of the U.S. Army Medical Defense Bioscience Review
Pagination68
Conference LocationHunt Valley, MD
Abstract

Sulfur mustard victims develop delayed lesions 1-20 years after the clinical symptoms of the acute phase subside. In our rabbit model, the delayed injury appears starting ~2 weeks following exposure. We studied the relation of the delayed lesion, to impaired epithelium and to ongoing inflammation, indicating therapeutic strategies. At one-month post exposure, neovasculatization appeared in ~50% of the corneas, thus two corneal populations were evident: non-impaired and impaired. Proliferative capacity of epithelial cells measured from cell yield of explants prepared from SM exposed corneas, was smaller than the yield from control corneas. However no difference was noted between yield and 1st passage growth from cells of the impaired and non-impaired corneal explants. Inflammatory markers were increased in SM exposed corneas, and more so in impaired corneas, as expressed by increases in corneal weight (edema), and in corneal PGE and CGRP. We conclude that persistent inflammation with a neurogenic component correlated with the clinical status of eyes during the delayed phase of the lesion. The chronic corneal inflammation and improper tissue regeneration, could contribute to limbal stem cell deficiency, which is consistent with clinical aspects of the delayed SM induced lesion. Our findings imply that continued supplement of growth factors and anti-inflammatory drugs during the delayed phase of the lesion might be beneficial.

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