Effect of total lens epithelial cell destruction on intraocular lens fixation in the human capsular bag

David J. Spalton, Sarah L. Russell, Richard Evans-Gowing, Julie A. Eldred, I. Michael Wormstone

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose To evaluate the effect of complete destruction of lens epithelial cells (LECs) in the capsular bag on intraocular lens (IOL) stability. Setting School of Biological Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich, United Kingdom. Design Comparative evaluation. Methods An in vitro organ culture model using the bag-zonule-ciliary body complex isolated from fellow human donor eyes was prepared. A capsulorhexis and fiber extraction were performed, and an Acrysof IOL was implanted. Preparations were secured by pinning the ciliary body to a silicone ring and maintaining it in 6 mL Eagle minimum essential medium supplemented with 5% v/v fetal calf serum and 10 ng/mL transforming growth factor-β2 for 3 weeks or more. One bag of each pair was treated with 1 μM thapsigargin to destroy all LECs. Observations of LEC growth were captured by phase-contrast microscopy, IOL stability by video microscopy, and endpoint analysis through scanning electron microscopy and immunocytochemistry. Results The LECs in control capsular bags migrated centrally, closing the bag and fixating the IOL between the anterior and posterior capsules, as seen clinically. These events were not observed in the thapsigargin-treated group. After a period of controlled orbital movement, the IOL in the control group stabilized quicker than in the treated bags. There was no IOL rotation in the bag; however, the IOLs in the treated group rocked with axial movement. Conclusions The LECs appeared to aid stabilization of current IOL designs in the capsular bag. The results have clinical implications for IOL design and for strategies to prevent posterior capsule opacification.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)306-312
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Cataract and Refractive Surgery
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems


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