PURPOSE: To evaluate the antifungal properties of topical antibiotics (already being used successfully to prevent bacterial endophthalmitis) and some promising antiseptics for antifungal prophylaxis in the setting of artificial corneal implantation. METHODS: Several commonly used antibiotics for antimicrobial prophylaxis after artificial corneal implantation, in addition to antiseptics [benzalkonium chloride (BAK), povidone-iodine (PI), and some ionic liquids (ILs)], were tested in vitro against Candida albicans, Fusarium solani, and Aspergillus fumigatus. The time-kill activity was determined. Toxicity was assayed in vitro on human corneal epithelial cultures using trypan blue. Adhesion and tissue invasion experiments were also carried out on porcine corneas and commonly used contact lenses, with or without gamma irradiation, and by analysis with fluorescence microscopy. RESULTS: Polymyxin B (PMB)/trimethoprim/BAK (Polytrim), PMB alone, gatifloxacin with BAK (Zymaxid), and same-concentration BAK alone exhibited antifungal activity in vitro. Moxifloxacin (MOX) or gatifloxacin without BAK-as well as trimethoprim, vancomycin, and chloramphenicol-had no effect. 1% PI and ILs had the highest efficacy/toxicity ratios (>1), and Polytrim was species dependent. Subfungicidal concentrations of Polytrim reduced adhesion of C. albicans to Kontur contact lenses. Gamma-irradiated corneas showed enhanced resistance to fungal invasion. CONCLUSIONS: Of antibiotic preparations already in use for bacterial prophylaxis after KPro surgery, Polytrim is a commonly used antibiotic with antifungal effects mediated by both PMB and BAK and may be sufficient for prophylaxis. PI as a 1% solution seems to be promising as a long-term antifungal agent. Choline-undecanoate IL is effective and virtually nontoxic and warrants further development.
Mutations in transforming growth factor-beta-induced (TGFBI) gene cause clinically distinct types of corneal dystrophies. To delineate the mechanisms driving these dystrophies, we focused on the R124C mutation in TGFBI that causes lattice corneal dystrophy type1 (LCD1) and generated novel transgenic mice harbouring a single amino acid substitution of arginine 124 with cysteine in TGFBI via ssODN-mediated base-pair substitution using CRISPR/Cas9 technology. Eighty percent of homozygous and 9.1% of heterozygous TGFBI-R124C mice developed a corneal opacity at 40 weeks of age. Hematoxylin and eosin and Masson trichrome staining showed eosinophilic deposits in subepithelial corneal stroma that stained negative for Congo-red. Although amyloid deposition was not observed in TGFBI-R124C mice, irregular amorphous deposits were clearly observed via transmission electron microscopy near the basement membrane. Interestingly, we found that the corneal deposition of TGFBI protein (TGFBIp) was significantly increased in homozygous TGFBI-R124C mice, suggesting a pathogenic role for the mutant protein accumulation. Furthermore, as observed in the LCD1 patients, corneal epithelial wound healing was significantly delayed in TGFBI-R124C mice. In conclusion, our novel mouse model of TGFBI-R124C corneal dystrophy reproduces features of the human disease. This mouse model will help delineate the pathogenic mechanisms of human corneal dystrophy.
PURPOSE: The transition to Descemet membrane endothelial keratoplasty (DMEK) is frequently challenging, requiring the adoption of new techniques, skills, and methods. We sought to draw on surgeons' initial experiences with DMEK to characterize the learning curve associated with this procedure and identify factors that could be linked to the frequency of primary graft failure (PGF) in the first 10 cases. METHODS: We invited corneal surgeons based in the United States who started performing the DMEK procedure within the past 2 years to answer a 12-question survey using an online survey platform. We analyzed quantitative and qualitative data. A Fisher exact test was used to determine whether preoperative approaches to preparation were associated with decreased PGF rates. RESULTS: A total of 100 US-based corneal surgeons replied from 34 of 50 states. Of these, 68% reported that DMEK comprised a majority of their endothelial keratoplasty cases. Approximately half of surgeons (52%) had performed more than 20 DMEK cases by the time of the survey, and 51% felt equally comfortable performing DMEK relative to Descemet stripping endothelial keratoplasty. Among the respondents, 37% answered that they had experienced PGF in the first 10 cases. Scrubbing in with an experienced colleague before surgery was associated with a decreased likelihood of at least one case of PGF (31%, P = 0.049), but not participation in a wet lab with an experienced instructor or mentor (38%, P = 0.50), nor having an eye bank representative present in the operating room (43%, P = 0.886). CONCLUSIONS: The collective experience of 100 surgeons beginning DMEK confirms the importance of mentorship and that the accompaniment of an experienced colleague during the learning curve is associated with lower rates of PGF.
In this experimental study we used for the first time Tiprotec as a solution for corneal preservation and cold storage. We compared the resultant endothelial cell morphology and viability with this obtained after preservation of the ex-vivo corneas with both usual standard techniques: conventional cold storage (using Eusol-C) and organ culture. This prospective, in vitro, 3-armed parallel study was performed with the use of 90 porcine corneas (examined for their endothelial quality and transparency) randomly selected for preservation in three storage methods (each 30 corneas): organ culture, standard cold storage (Eusol-C) and experimental cold storage (Tiprotec) Endothelium cell quantity and quality as well as corneal opacification were assessed. The degree of endothelial transparency was significantly reduced over time with all preservation media, without any significant difference among the three groups at any point of time. A reduction in endothelial cell density was also observed with all three preservation media after 30 days of storage without statistically significant differences between groups. The number of hexagonal and pentagonal endothelium cells was significantly reduced overtime in all media with significantly more hexagonal and pentagonal in the organ culture group compared to the cold storage groups. We could show that the cryopreservation medium Tiprotec, used until now for the preservation of vascular grafts, was of similar quality compared to the medium Eusol-C for the hypothermic storage of corneal tissue for an extended period of time up to 30 days. In comparison to organic culture with culture medium KII, both Tiprotec and Eusol-C were found less effective in preserving endothelial cell quality, as assessed by the morphometric analysis, and viability, as assessed by the degree of vacuolization at least up to the 30th day of storage. However, both, Tiprotec- and Eusol-C-preserved corneas demonstrated a certain capacity to recover after their submission in organ culture.
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Artificial intelligence has already provided multiple clinically relevant applications in ophthalmology. Yet, the explosion of nonstandardized reporting of high-performing algorithms are rendered useless without robust and streamlined implementation guidelines. The development of protocols and checklists will accelerate the translation of research publications to impact on patient care. RECENT FINDINGS: Beyond technological scepticism, we lack uniformity in analysing algorithmic performance generalizability, and benchmarking impacts across clinical settings. No regulatory guardrails have been set to minimize bias or optimize interpretability; no consensus clinical acceptability thresholds or systematized postdeployment monitoring has been set. Moreover, stakeholders with misaligned incentives deepen the landscape complexity especially when it comes to the requisite data integration and harmonization to advance the field. Therefore, despite increasing algorithmic accuracy and commoditization, the infamous 'implementation gap' persists. Open clinical data repositories have been shown to rapidly accelerate research, minimize redundancies and disseminate the expertise and knowledge required to overcome existing barriers. Drawing upon the longstanding success of existing governance frameworks and robust data use and sharing agreements, the ophthalmic community has tremendous opportunity in ushering artificial intelligence into medicine. By collaboratively building a powerful resource of open, anonymized multimodal ophthalmic data, the next generation of clinicians can advance data-driven eye care in unprecedented ways. SUMMARY: This piece demonstrates that with readily accessible data, immense progress can be achieved clinically and methodologically to realize artificial intelligence's impact on clinical care. Exponentially progressive network effects can be seen by consolidating, curating and distributing data amongst both clinicians and data scientists.
PURPOSE: To determine whether small macular hole closure can be achieved with 25-G vitrectomy surgery with internal limiting membrane peeling without the use of intraocular gas tamponade or facedown positioning. METHODS: 25-G vitrectomy surgery with internal limiting membrane peeling without the use of intraocular gas tamponade or positioning was performed on 20 eyes with a small (<400-µm diameter), full-thickness macular hole. RESULTS: In 17 of 20 eyes (85%), the hole had closed. Three holes had closed by Postoperative Day 1, 13 holes by Postoperative Week 1, 16 holes by Postoperative Week 2, and 17 holes by Postoperative Week 6. At Postoperative Month 1, vision improved in 16 of 17 eyes in which the macular hole had closed. One hole that had not closed at the first postoperative week and two holes that had not closed at the third postoperative week required follow-up surgery with intraocular gas tamponade and facedown positioning, after which the hole closed. The mean preoperative visual acuity was 0.626 logMAR (20/85), and the mean postoperative visual acuity after 1 month was 0.392 logMAR (20/50) (P < 0.001). CONCLUSION: Vitrectomy surgery with internal limiting membrane peeling without the use of gas tamponade or positioning can achieve closure of small macular holes.
Lambert SR, VanderVeen DK, Kim SJ. Reply. Ophthalmology 2020;127(1):e6-e7.
Lysosome-associated membrane protein-2 (LAMP2), is a highly glycosylated lysosomal membrane protein involved in chaperone mediated autophagy. Mutations of LAMP2 cause the classic triad of myopathy, cardiomyopathy and encephalopathy of Danon disease (DD). Additionally, retinopathy has also been observed in young DD patients, leading to vision loss. Emerging evidence show LAMP2-deficiency to be involved in oxidative stress (ROS) but the mechanism remains obscure. In the present study, we found that tert-butyl hydroperoxide or antimycin A induced more cell death in LAMP2 knockdown (LAMP2-KD) than in control ARPE-19 cells. Mechanistically, LAMP2-KD reduced the concentration of cytosolic cysteine, resulting in low glutathione (GSH), inferior antioxidant capability and mitochondrial lipid peroxidation. ROS induced RPE cell death through ferroptosis. Inhibition of glutathione peroxidase 4 (GPx4) increased lethality in LAMP2-KD cells compared to controls. Cysteine and glutamine supplementation restored GSH and prevented ROS-induced cell death of LAMP2-KD RPE cells.
Purpose: Ocular infection by human adenovirus species D type 37 (HAdV-D37) causes epidemic keratoconjunctivitis, a severe, hyperacute condition. The corneal component of epidemic keratoconjunctivitis begins upon infection of corneal epithelium, and the mechanism of viral entry dictates subsequent proinflammatory gene expression. Therefore, it is important to understand the specific pathways of adenoviral entry in these cells. Methods: Transmission electron microscopy of primary and tert-immortalized human corneal epithelial cells infected with HAdV-D37 was performed to identify the means of viral entry. Confocal microscopy was used to determine intracellular trafficking. The results of targeted small interfering RNA and specific chemical inhibitors were analyzed by quantitative PCR, and Western blot. Results: By transmission electron microscopy, HAdV-D37 was seen to enter by both clathrin-coated pits and macropinocytosis; however, entry was both pH and dynamin 2 independent. Small interfering RNA against clathrin, AP2A1, and lysosome-associated membrane protein 1, but not early endosome antigen 1, decreased early viral gene expression. Ethyl-isopropyl amiloride, which blocks micropinocytosis, did not affect HAdV-D37 entry, but IPA, an inhibitor of p21-activated kinase, and important to actin polymerization, decreased viral entry in a dose-dependent manner. Conclusions: HAdV-D37 enters human corneal epithelial cells by a noncanonical clathrin-mediated pathway involving lysosome-associated membrane protein 1 and PAK1, independent of pH, dynamin, and early endosome antigen 1. We showed earlier that HAdV-D37 enters human keratocytes through caveolae. Therefore, epidemic keratoconjunctivitis-associated viruses enter different corneal cell types via disparate pathways, which could account for a relative paucity of proinflammatory gene expression upon infection of corneal epithelial cells compared with keratocytes, as seen in prior studies.
Colony-stimulating factor 1 receptor (CSF1R) inhibition has been proposed as a method for microglia depletion, with the assumption that it does not affect peripheral immune cells. Here, we show that CSF1R inhibition by PLX5622 indeed affects the myeloid and lymphoid compartments, causes long-term changes in bone marrow-derived macrophages by suppressing interleukin 1β, CD68, and phagocytosis but not CD208, following exposure to endotoxin, and also reduces the population of resident and interstitial macrophages of peritoneum, lung, and liver but not spleen. Thus, small-molecule CSF1R inhibition is not restricted to microglia, causing strong effects on circulating and tissue macrophages that perdure long after cessation of the treatment. Given that peripheral monocytes repopulate the central nervous system after CSF1R inhibition, these changes have practical implications for relevant experimental data.
The success of base editors for the study and treatment of genetic diseases depends on the ability to deliver them in vivo to the relevant cell types. Delivery via adeno-associated viruses (AAVs) is limited by AAV packaging capacity, which precludes the use of full-length base editors. Here, we report the application of dual AAVs for the delivery of split cytosine and adenine base editors that are then reconstituted by trans-splicing inteins. Optimized dual AAVs enable in vivo base editing at therapeutically relevant efficiencies and dosages in the mouse brain (up to 59% of unsorted cortical tissue), liver (38%), retina (38%), heart (20%) and skeletal muscle (9%). We also show that base editing corrects, in mouse brain tissue, a mutation that causes Niemann-Pick disease type C (a neurodegenerative ataxia), slowing down neurodegeneration and increasing lifespan. The optimized delivery vectors should facilitate the efficient introduction of targeted point mutations into multiple tissues of therapeutic interest.
Lutein is one of the few xanthophyll carotenoids that is found in high concentration in the macula of human retina. As synthesis of lutein within the human body is impossible, lutein can only be obtained from diet. It is a natural substance abundant in egg yolk and dark green leafy vegetables. Many basic and clinical studies have reported lutein's anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory properties in the eye, suggesting its beneficial effects on protection and alleviation of ocular diseases such as age-related macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, retinopathy of prematurity, myopia, and cataract. Most importantly, lutein is categorized as Generally Regarded as Safe (GRAS), posing minimal side-effects upon long term consumption. In this review, we will discuss the chemical structure and properties of lutein as well as its application and safety as a nutritional supplement. Finally, the effects of lutein consumption on the aforementioned eye diseases will be reviewed.
Spinal cord injury in mammals is thought to trigger scar formation with little regeneration of axons. Here we show that a crush injury to the spinal cord in neonatal mice leads to scar-free healing that permits the growth of long projecting axons through the lesion. Depletion of microglia in neonatal mice disrupts this healing process and stalls the regrowth of axons, suggesting that microglia are critical for orchestrating the injury response. Using single-cell RNA sequencing and functional analyses, we find that neonatal microglia are transiently activated and have at least two key roles in scar-free healing. First, they transiently secrete fibronectin and its binding proteins to form bridges of extracellular matrix that ligate the severed ends of the spinal cord. Second, neonatal-but not adult-microglia express several extracellular and intracellular peptidase inhibitors, as well as other molecules that are involved in resolving inflammation. We transplanted either neonatal microglia or adult microglia treated with peptidase inhibitors into spinal cord lesions of adult mice, and found that both types of microglia significantly improved healing and axon regrowth. Together, our results reveal the cellular and molecular basis of the nearly complete recovery of neonatal mice after spinal cord injury, and suggest strategies that could be used to facilitate scar-free healing in the adult mammalian nervous system.
PURPOSE: To quantify the resident learning curve for cataract surgery using operative time as an indicator of surgical competency, to identify the case threshold at which marginal additional educational benefit became equivocal, and to characterize heterogeneity in residents' pathways to surgical competency. SETTING: Academic medical center. DESIGN: Large-scale retrospective consecutive case series. METHODS: All cataract surgery cases performed by resident physicians as primary surgeon at Massachusetts Eye and Ear from July 1, 2010, through June 30, 2015, were reviewed. Data were abstracted from Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education case logs and operative time measurements. A linear mixed-methods analysis was conducted to model changes in residents' cataract surgery operative times as a function of sequential case number, with resident identity included as a random effect in the model to normalize between-resident variability. RESULTS: A total of 2096 cases were analyzed. A marked progressive decrease in operative time was noted for resident cases 1 to 39 (mean change -0.17 minutes per additional case, 95% CI, -0.21 to -0.12; P < .001). A modest, steady reduction in operative time was subsequently noted for case numbers 40 to 149 (mean change -0.05 minutes per additional case, 95% CI, -0.07 to -0.04; P < .001). No statistically significant improvement was found in operative times beyond the 150th case. CONCLUSIONS: Residents derived educational benefit from performing a greater number of cataract procedures than current minimum requirements. However, cases far in excess of this threshold might have diminishing educational return in residency. Educational resources currently used for these cases might be more appropriately devoted to other training priorities.
Thyroid eye disease (TED) is an autoimmune inflammatory disease of the orbit and the most common extrathyroidal manifestation of Graves disease. The release of pro-inflammatory cytokines is associated with inflammation of the ocular surface and lacrimal gland along with periorbital skin erythema and edema. Resultant tissue remodeling, fibrosis, and fat deposition can impart permanent physical changes to the ocular adnexa with effects on function and cosmesis. These changes occur in the active phase of disease, and it is during this time that steroids are often relied on to help alleviate symptoms. Due to the common and predictable side effects of long-term and high-dose steroid use, there has been a continuous effort to find alternative steroid-sparing medical management options for TED. This review highlights the various research studies that support the use of these medications.
We describe here a case report of a novel technique for tube erosion repair, which modifies and utilizes the commercially available tube extender (Model TE). The modification of the tube extender makes the commercially available tube extender more compact and is useful in cases where conjunctival mobility and space are limited. This debulking of the tube extender may reduce the risk of future tube exposure and dellen formation.
BACKGROUND/AIMS: To assess the effect of partial posterior vitreous detachment (pPVD) on spectral-domain optical coherence tomography (OCT) peripapillary retinal nerve fibre layer thickness (RNFL) measurements. METHODS: Spectral-domain OCT RNFL thickness measurements were obtained from 684 consecutive patients who were seen in the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Glaucoma Service. Of these patients, we compared RNFL thickness measurements between 101 eyes of 101 glaucoma suspects who met inclusion criteria (55 eyes with and 46 eyes without pPVD). RESULTS: Among all 684 patients, 253 (37%) had pPVD in at least one eye. Among a subset of 101 eyes of 101 glaucoma suspects, average RNFL thickness was greater in eyes with compared to eyes without pPVD (p=0.02). Measurements were significantly greater in the inferior (p=0.004) and superior quadrants (p=0.008), but not in the nasal (p=0.10) and temporal quadrants (p=0.25). The difference in average RNFL thickness remained significant (p=0.05) even when corrected for expected age-related decline in RNFL thickness. CONCLUSION: Over a third of patients were found on peripapillary spectral-domain OCT to have a pPVD, which was associated with greater RNFL thickness measurements. Judicious clinical interpretation of this finding on spectral-domain OCT RNFL thickness scans should be factored into the assessment of glaucoma suspects.
PRECIS: In open-angle glaucoma, when neuroretinal rim tissue measured by volumetric optical coherence tomography (OCT) scans is below a third of the normal value, visual field (VF) damage becomes detectable. PURPOSE: To determine the amount of neuroretinal rim tissue thickness below which VF damage becomes detectable. METHODS: In a retrospective cross-sectional study, 1 eye per subject (of 57 healthy and 100 open-angle glaucoma patients) at an academic institution had eye examinations, VF testing, spectral-domain OCT retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness measurements, and optic nerve volumetric scans. Using custom algorithms, the minimum distance band (MDB) neuroretinal rim thickness was calculated from optic nerve scans. "Broken-stick" regression was performed for estimating both the MDB and RNFL thickness tipping-point thresholds, below which were associated with initial VF defects in the decibel scale. The slopes for the structure-function relationship above and below the thresholds were computed. Smoothing curves of the MDB and RNFL thickness covariates were evaluated to examine the consistency of the independently identified tipping-point pairs. RESULTS: Plots of VF total deviation against MDB thickness revealed plateaus of VF total deviation unrelated to MDB thickness. Below the thresholds, VF total deviation decreased with MDB thickness, with the associated slopes significantly greater than those above the thresholds (P<0.014). Below 31% of global MDB thickness, and 36.8% and 43.6% of superior and inferior MDB thickness, VF damage becomes detectable. The MDB and RNFL tipping points were in good accordance with the correlation of the MDB and RNFL thickness covariates. CONCLUSIONS: When neuroretinal rim tissue, characterized by MDB thickness in OCT, is below a third of the normal value, VF damage in the decibel scale becomes detectable.
Since the discovery of the first microRNA (miRNA) decades ago, studies of miRNA biology have expanded in many biomedical research fields, including eye research. The critical roles of miRNAs in normal development and diseases have made miRNAs useful biomarkers or molecular targets for potential therapeutics. In the eye, ocular neovascularization (NV) is a leading cause of blindness in multiple vascular eye diseases. Current anti-angiogenic therapies, such as anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) treatment, have their limitations, indicating the need for investigating new targets. Recent studies established the roles of various miRNAs in the regulation of pathological ocular NV, suggesting miRNAs as both biomarkers and therapeutic targets in vascular eye diseases. This review summarizes the biogenesis of miRNAs, and their functions in the normal development and diseases of the eye, with a focus on clinical and experimental retinopathies in both human and animal models. Discovery of novel targets involving miRNAs in vascular eye diseases will provide insights for developing new treatments to counter ocular NV.