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J Anat. Aug 1993; 183(Pt 1): 121–129.
PMCID: PMC1259860

Eyelid development, fusion and subsequent reopening in the mouse.

Abstract

The process of eyelid development was studied in the mouse. The critical events occur between about 15.5 d postcoitum (p.c.) and 12 d after birth, and were studied by conventional histology and by scanning electron microscopy. At about 15.5 d p.c. the cornea of the eye is clearly visible with the primitive eyelids being represented by protruding ridges of epithelium at its periphery. Over the next 24 h, eyelid development proceeds to the stage when the cornea is completely covered by the fused eyelids. Periderm cells stream in to fill the gap between the developing eyelids. Their proliferative activity is such that they produce a cellular excrescence on the outer surface of the line of fusion of the eyelids. This excrescence had almost disappeared by about 17.5 d p.c. Keratinisation is first evident at this stage on the surface of the eyelids and passes continuously from one eyelid to the other. Evidence of epidermal differentiation is more clearly seen in the newborn, where a distinctive stratum granulosum now occupies about one third of its entire thickness. Within the subjacent dermis, hair follicles are differentiating. By about 5 d after birth, a thick layer of keratin extends without interruption across the junctional region. While a noticeable surface indentation overlies the latter, a similar depression is only seen on the conjunctival surface by about 10 d after birth. Keratinisation is also observed to extend in from the epidermal surface to involve the entire region between the 2 eyelids at about this time.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

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Selected References

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