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The Transfer of Ocular Cells Using Collagen

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The present study was designed to evaluate the use of collagen gel loaded with human retinal pigment epithelium (ARPE19) in cellular transfer and to assess its viability within the gel. Collagen solution was prepared by dissolving calfskin in hydrochloric acid to make a final concentration of 2.0 mg/ml and this was mixed with 10,000 ARPE19 cells/ml. The cell viability in gel was determined using MTT assay. van Gieson stain and proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) were used to identify the location of collagen and to localize the site of cell proliferation, respectively. The ARPE19 cells in gel appeared to be healthy with a rounded morphology. The optimal collagen concentration was 1.9 mg/ml. When this concentration was used to hold cells for over 12 days, it could be seen that the growth rate was the same between day 2 and day 8 in gel and on plastic. When the cell-loaded gels were transferred onto standard tissue culture plastics, progressive cell migrations over time resembling cell migrations in organotypic explant cultures were observed. Upon intravitreal injection of cell-containing collagen suspension into a rabbit’s eye, the gel became suspended within the vitreous a few hours after injection (day 0). However, it became obvious that the gel dispersed and spread around the vitreous even after just 24 h. These cells inside the vitreous were PCNA positive, indicating that the human ARPE19 cells have the capacity to proliferate even after 11 days. The present study demonstrated the potential use of collagen gel as a tool in the transfer of cellular matrix onto other substrates. The results show that the cell seeding number must be critically balanced with the concentration of gel for it to be used as transplant material.

Keywords: Cell transfer; Cellular matrix; Collagen gel; Cytotoxicity; Intravitreal injection; Retinal pigment epithelium

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3727/000000004783983666

Affiliations: Department of Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China

Publication date: January 1, 2004

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  • Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.
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