Presurgical Corticosteroid Treatment Improves Corneal Transplant Survival in Mice

and †Moran Eye Center, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT.
Cornea (Impact Factor: 2.04). 09/2013; 32(12). DOI: 10.1097/ICO.0b013e31829ebb0d
Source: PubMed


To examine the effects of presurgical corticosteroid treatment for normal-risk penetrating keratoplasty (NRPK), high-risk penetrating keratoplasty (HRPK), and high-risk penetrating keratoplasty plus lensectomy.
We used 3 corneal transplantation models (NRPK, HRPK, and high-risk penetrating keratoplasty plus lensectomy). For each model, we tried to compare the effect of corticosteroid treatment according to different timetables as follows: The first trial began with a corticosteroid injection given 2 weeks before the PK and continued until 4 weeks after the PK (group 1). The second trial started with a corticosteroid injection given on the day of the PK and continued for 4 weeks after the PK (group 2). The third trial started with a corticosteroid injection administered on the day of the PK and continued for 8 weeks after the PK (group 3). After harvesting and immunostaining of corneas, graft survival, neovascularization (NV), and lymphangiogenesis (LY) were compared among the groups. A P value <0.05 was considered as being statistically significant.
With respect to graft survival, group 1 had improved graft survival compared with that of group 3 in the HRPK model (P = 0.025). In all the 3 PK models, groups 2 and 3 demonstrated a similar graft survival (P > 0.05). With respect to NV and LY, in NRPK, group 1 showed less NV than did group 2 (P < 0.001) and group 3 (P = 0.016). In HRPK, group 1 also demonstrated less NV and LY than did group 3 (P = 0.045 and 0.044, respectively).
The initiation time point of the corticosteroid treatment is important for graft survival. Corticosteroid pretreatment is an effective means to increase graft survival for HRPK and to decrease NV and LY for both NRPK and HRPK.

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Available from: Xiaohui Zhang, Jan 05, 2015
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    ABSTRACT: Corneal transplantation is the most common form of organ transplantation in the United States with between 45,000 and 55,000 procedures performed each year. While several animal models exist for this procedure and mice are the species that is most commonly used. The reasons for using mice are the relative cost of using this species, the existence of many genetically defined strains that allow for the study of immune responses, and the existence of an extensive array of reagents that can be used to further define responses in this species. This model has been used to define factors in the cornea that are responsible for the relative immune privilege status of this tissue that enables corneal allografts to survive acute rejection in the absence of immunosuppressive therapy. It has also been used to define those factors that are most important in rejection of such allografts. Consequently, much of what we know concerning mechanisms of both corneal allograft acceptance and rejection are due to studies using a murine model of corneal transplantation. In addition to describing a model for acute corneal allograft rejection, we also present for the first time a model of late-term corneal allograft rejection.
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