[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Purpose:
To determine the efficacy of intratissue refractive index shaping (IRIS) using 400-nm femtosecond laser pulses (blue light) for writing refractive structures directly into live cat corneas in vivo, and to assess the longevity of these structures in the eyes of living cats.
Four eyes from two adult cats underwent Blue-IRIS. Light at 400 nm with 100-femtosecond (fs) pulses were tightly focused into the corneal stroma of each eye at an 80-MHz repetition rate. These pulses locally increased the refractive index of the corneal stroma via an endogenous, two-photon absorption process and were used to inscribe three-layered, gradient index patterns into the cat corneas. The optical effects of the patterns were then tracked using optical coherence tomography (OCT) and Shack-Hartmann wavefront sensing.
Blue-IRIS patterns locally changed ocular cylinder by -1.4 ± 0.3 diopters (D), defocus by -2.0 ± 0.5 D, and higher-order root mean square (HORMS) by 0.31 ± 0.04 μm at 1 month post-IRIS, without significant changes in corneal thickness or curvature. Refractive changes were maintained for the duration they were tracked, 12 months post-IRIS in one eye, and just more than 3 months in the remaining three eyes.
Blue-IRIS can be used to inscribe refractive structures into live cat cornea in vivo that are stable for at least 12 months, and are not associated with significant alterations in corneal thicknesses or radii of curvature. This result is a critical step toward establishing Blue-IRIS as a promising technique for noninvasive vision correction.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: To evaluate myofibroblast differentiation as an etiology of haze at the graft-host interface in a cat model of Descemet's Stripping Automated Endothelial Keratoplasty (DSAEK).
DSAEK was performed on 10 eyes of 5 adult domestic short-hair cats. In vivo corneal imaging with slit lamp, confocal, and optical coherence tomography (OCT) were performed twice weekly. Cats were sacrificed and corneas harvested 4 hours, and 2, 4, 6, and 9 days post-DSAEK. Corneal sections were stained with the TUNEL method and immunohistochemistry was performed for α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) and fibronectin with DAPI counterstain.
At all in vivo imaging time-points, corneal OCT revealed an increase in backscatter of light and confocal imaging revealed an acellular zone at the graft-host interface. At all post-mortem time-points, immunohistochemistry revealed a complete absence of α-SMA staining at the graft-host interface. At 4 hours, extracellular fibronectin staining was identified along the graft-host interface and both fibronectin and TUNEL assay were positive within adjacent cells extending into the host stroma. By day 2, fibronectin and TUNEL staining diminished and a distinct acellular zone was present in the region of previously TUNEL-positive cells.
OCT imaging consistently showed increased reflectivity at the graft-host interface in cat corneas in the days post-DSAEK. This was not associated with myofibroblast differentiation at the graft-host interface, but rather with apoptosis and the development of a subsequent acellular zone. The roles of extracellular matrix changes and keratocyte cell death and repopulation should be investigated further as potential contributors to the interface optical changes.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Corneal scarring remains a major cause of blindness world-wide, with limited treatment options, all of which have side-effects. Here, we tested the hypothesis that topical application of Rosiglitazone, a Thiazolidinedione and ligand of peroxisome proliferator activated receptor gamma (PPARγ), can effectively block scar formation in a cat model of corneal damage. Adult cats underwent bilateral epithelial debridement followed by excimer laser ablation of the central corneal stroma to a depth of ∼160 µm as a means of experimentally inducing a reproducible wound. Eyes were then left untreated, or received 50 µl of either 10 µM Rosiglitazone in DMSO/Celluvisc, DMSO/Celluvisc vehicle or Celluvisc vehicle twice daily for 2 weeks. Cellular aspects of corneal wound healing were evaluated with in vivo confocal imaging and post-mortem immunohistochemistry for alpha smooth muscle actin (αSMA). Impacts of the wound and treatments on optical quality were assessed using wavefront sensing and optical coherence tomography at 2, 4, 8 and 12 weeks post-operatively. In parallel, cat corneal fibroblasts were cultured to assess the effects of Rosiglitazone on TGFβ-induced αSMA expression. Topical application of Rosiglitazone to cat eyes after injury decreased αSMA expression and haze, as well as the induction of lower-order and residual, higher-order wavefront aberrations compared to vehicle-treated eyes. Rosiglitazone also inhibited TGFβ-induced αSMA expression in cultured corneal fibroblasts. In conclusion, Rosiglitazone effectively controlled corneal fibrosis in vivo and in vitro, while restoring corneal thickness and optics. Its topical application may represent an effective, new avenue for the prevention of corneal scarring with distinct advantages for pathologically thin corneas.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: The manipulation of visual perceptual learning is emerging as an important rehabilitation tool following visual system damage. Specificity of visual learning for training stimulus and task attributes has been used in prior work to infer a differential contribution of higher-level versus lower-level visual cortical areas to this process. The present study used a controlled experimental paradigm in felines to examine whether relearning of motion discrimination and the specificity of such relearning are differently influenced by damage at lower versus higher levels of the visual cortical hierarchy. Cats with damage to either early visual areas 17,18, and 19, or to higher-level, motion-processing lateral suprasylvian (LS) cortex were trained to perform visual tasks with controlled fixation. Animals with either type of lesion could relearn to discriminate the direction of motion of both drifting gratings and random dot stimuli in their impaired visual field. However, two factors emerged as critical for allowing transfer of learning to untrained motion stimuli: (1) an intact LS cortex and (2) more complex visual stimuli. Thus, while the hierarchical level of visual cortex damage did not seem to limit the ability to relearn motion discriminations, generalizability of relearning with a damaged visual system appeared to be influenced by both the areas damaged and the nature of the stimulus used during training.
Full-text Article · Apr 2012 · The Journal of Neuroscience : The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: To test the feasibility of intratissue refractive index shaping (IRIS) in living corneas by using 400-nm femtosecond (fs) laser pulses (blue-IRIS). To test the hypothesis that the intrinsic two-photon absorption of the cornea allows blue-IRIS to be performed with greater efficacy than when using 800-nm femtosecond laser pulses.
Fresh cat corneas were obtained postmortem and cut into six wedges. Blue laser pulses at 400 nm, with 100-fs pulse duration at 80 MHz were used to micromachine phase gratings into each corneal wedge at scanning speeds from 1 to 15 mm/s. Grating lines were 1 μm wide, 5 μm apart, and 150 μm below the anterior corneal surface. Refractive index (RI) changes in micromachined regions were measured immediately by recording the diffraction efficiency of inscribed gratings. Six hours later, the corneas were processed for histology, and TUNEL staining was performed to assess whether blue-IRIS causes cell death.
Scanning at 1 and 2 mm/s caused overt corneal damage in the form of bubbles and burns. At faster scanning speeds (5, 10, and 15 mm/s), phase gratings were created in the corneal stroma, which were shown to be pure RI changes ranging from 0.037 to 0.021 in magnitude. The magnitude of RI change was inversely related to scanning speed. TUNEL staining showed cell death only around bubbles and burns.
Blue-IRIS can be performed safely and effectively in living cornea. Compared with near-infrared laser pulses, blue-IRIS enhances both achievable RI change and scanning speed without the need to dope the tissue with two-photon sensitizers, increasing the clinical applicability of this technique.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Nanojoule blue femtosecond laser pulses were used for micromachining in living corneal tissue kept alive in Optisol-GS. Refractive index changes of 0.021 to 0.037 were obtained without causing cell death.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Two-photon fluorescence was used for the first time to measure sodium fluorescein distribution in live corneal tissue. The diffusion depth was determined to be 350 µm under study conditions with 11µm axial resolution.