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Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2019 Jan 2;60(1):113-122. doi: 10.1167/iovs.18-25930.

An In Vitro Human Lens Capsular Bag Model Adopting a Graded Culture Regime to Assess Putative Impact of IOLs on PCO Formation.

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School of Biological Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich, United Kingdom.
HOYA Surgical Optics, Disruptive Target Research Group, Global R&D, Singapore.



To develop a culture regime for the in vitro human lens capsular bag model that better reflects clinical events following cataract surgery and to use this refined model to evaluate the putative impact of IOLs on PCO formation.


Capsulorhexis and lens extraction were performed on human donor eyes to generate capsular bags attached to the ciliary body by the zonules. Preparations were secured by pinning the ciliary body to a silicone ring and maintaining in 6 mL serum-free EMEM for 28 days or in a graded culture system (days 1-3, 5% human serum and 10 ng/mL TGFβ2; days 4-7, 2% human serum and 1 ng/mL TGFβ2; days 8-14, 1% human serum and 0.1 ng/mL TGFβ2; days 15-28, serum-free EMEM), which better mimics clinical changes. Preparations were monitored with phase-contrast and modified-dark-field microscopy. Cell coverage and light scatter were quantified using image analysis software. The transdifferentiation marker, α-SMA and matrix component, fibronectin were assessed by immunocytochemistry. To assess IOLs in the model, Alcon Acrysof or Hoya Vivinex IOLs were implanted in match-paired capsular bags.


Match-paired experiments showed that graded culture enhanced growth, facilitated matrix contraction, increased transdifferentiation, and promoted matrix deposition relative to serum-free culture. The graded culture protocol was applied to match-paired bags implanted with a Hoya Vivinex or an Alcon Acrysof IOL. The Vivinex demonstrated a lag in growth across the posterior capsule. However, by day 28, coverage was similar, but light-scatter was greater with Acrysof implanted. Cell growth on the Acrysof IOL anterior surface was significantly greater than Vivinex.


The graded culture human capsular bag model serves as an excellent system to evaluate and develop intraocular lenses. The Hoya Vivinex IOL showed an overall better level of performance against postsurgical wound healing and PCO than the Alcon Acrysof using this model.


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