The effect of bacteriochlorophyll derivative WST-D and near infrared light on the molecular and fibrillar architecture of the corneal stroma

S. Hayes*, N. Aldahlawi, A. L. Marcovich, J. Brekelmans, A. Goz, A. Scherz, R. D. Young, J. S. Bell, D. P. O'Brart, R. M. M. A. Nuijts, K. M. Meek

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Web of Science)

Abstract

A cross-linking technique involving application of Bacteriochlorophyll Derivative WST-11 mixed with dextran (WST-D) to the epithelium-debrided cornea and illumination with Near Infrared (NIR), has been identified as a promising therapy for stiffening pathologically weakened corneas. To investigate its effect on corneal collagen architecture, x-ray scattering and electron microscopy data were collected from paired WST-D/NIR treated and untreated rabbit corneas. The treated eye received 2.5mg/mL WST-D and was illuminated by a NIR diode laser (755nm, 10mW/cm(2)). An increase in corneal thickness (caused by corneal oedema) occurred at 1-day post-treatment but resolved in the majority of cases within 4 days. The epithelium was fully healed after 6-8 days. X-ray scattering revealed no difference in average collagen interfibrillar spacing, fibril diameter, D-periodicity or intermolecular spacing between treated and untreated specimens. Similarly, electron microscopy images of the anterior and posterior stroma in healed WST-D/NIR corneas and untreated controls revealed no obvious differences in collagen organisation or fibril diameter. As the size and organisation of stromal collagen is closely associated with the optical properties of the cornea, the absence of any large-scale changes following treatment confirms the potential of WST-D/NIR therapy as a means of safely stiffening the cornea.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9836
Number of pages11
JournalScientific Reports
Volume10
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 17 Jun 2020

Keywords

  • COLLAGEN CROSS-LINKING
  • X-RAY-DIFFRACTION
  • KERATOCYTE APOPTOSIS
  • PHOTODYNAMIC THERAPY
  • RABBIT CORNEAS
  • RIBOFLAVIN
  • ULTRASTRUCTURE
  • PROTEOGLYCANS
  • ORGANIZATION
  • RESISTANCE

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