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Feasibility and safety of porcine Descemet's membrane as a carrier for generating tissue-engineered corneal endothelium

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The aim of this study was to evaluate the feasibility and safety of porcine Descemet's membrane (DM) as a carrier for the generation of tissueengineered corneal endothelium by analyzing porcine endogenous retroviruses (PERVs) and the αgal epitope. The morphology of porcine and human DM was observed by hematoxylin and eosin staining and scanning electron microscopy. Immunohistochemical staining was used to investigate the location of αgal epitopes on porcine DM used for xenotransplantation. The porcine DM was treated with ethylene glycol diglycidyl ether (EDGE) for 2¬†weeks, and then the PERV gene sequences in porcine DM and DMEDGE were detected by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and realtime PCR, respectively. The porcine DM had tight basement membrane morphology, which was similar to human DM in terms of thickness. No positive immunohistochemical staining of the αgal epitope was detected in porcine DM. PERV expression of pol, gag, envA and envB was noted in porcine DM, but in DMEDGE it was completely degraded. Based on structural, immunological and etiological studies, porcine DM may be an ideal and viable carrier for the generation of tissue-engineered corneal endothelium.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Ophthalmology, Peking University Third Hospital, Beijing 100191, P.R. China

Publication date: August 1, 2015

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  • Molecular Medicine Reports is a monthly, peer-reviewed journal available in print and online, that includes studies devoted to molecular medicine, underscoring aspects including pharmacology, pathology, genetics, neurosciences, infectious diseases, molecular cardiology and molecular surgery. In vitro and in vivo studies of experimental model systems pertaining to the mechanisms of a variety of diseases offer researchers the necessary tools and knowledge with which to aid the diagnosis and treatment of human diseases.
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