Novel Corneal Endothelial Cell Carrier Couples a Biodegradable Polymer and a Mesenchymal Stem Cell-Derived Extracellular Matrix

Song, Eui SunPark, Joo-HeeHa, Sang SuCha, Pu-hyeonKang, Jung-TaekPark, Choul YongPark, Kwideok
Issue Date
American Chemical Society
ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, v.14, no.10, pp.12116 - 12129
Here, we report a transparent, biodegradable, and cell-adhesive carrier that is securely coupled with the extracellular matrix (ECM) for corneal endothelial cell (CEC) transplantation. To fabricate a CEC carrier, poly(lactide-co-caprolactone) (PLCL) solution was poured onto the decellularized ECM (UMDM) derived from in vitro cultured umbilical cord blood-MSCs. Once completely dried, ECM-PLCL was then peeled off from the substrate. It was 20 mu m thick, transparent, rich in fibronectin and collagen type IV, and easy to handle. Surface characterizations exhibited that ECM-PLCL was very rough (54.0 +/- 4.50 nm) and uniformly covered in high density by ECM and retained a positive surface charge (65.2 +/- 57.8 mV), as assessed via atomic force microscopy. Human CECs (B4G12) on the ECM-PLCL showed good cell attachment, with a cell density similar to the normal cornea. They could also maintain a cell phenotype, with nicely formed cell-cell junctions as assessed via ZO-1 and N-cadherin at 14 days. This was in sharp contrast to the CEC behaviors on the FNC-coated PLCL (positive control). A function-related marker, Na+/K+-ATPase, was also identified via western blot and immunofluorescence. In addition, primary rabbit CECs showed a normal shape and they could express structural and functional proteins on the ECM-PLCL. A simulation test confirmed that CECs loaded on the ECM-PLCL were successfully engrafted into the decellularized porcine corneal tissue, with a high engraftment level and cell viability. Moreover, ECM-PLCL transplantation into the anterior chamber of the rabbit eye for 8 weeks proved the maintenance of normal cornea properties. Taken together, this study demonstrates that our ECM-PLCL can be a promising cornea endothelium graft with an excellent ECM microenvironment for CECs.
HEPATOCYTE GROWTH-FACTOR; HYDROGEL FILMS; REGENERATION; DEGRADATION; SCAFFOLDS; cornea; corneal endothelial cell (CEC); decellularized extracellular matrix; poly(lactide-co-caprolactone) (PLCL); CEC carrier
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