Author(s): Wormstone IM, Collison DJ, Hansom SP, Duncan G
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Abstract The lens is a unique organ in that it is avascular and non-innervated, obtaining all nutrients from the aqueous and vitreous humours that bathe the lens. All lenses attempt to achieve the same goal, namely to maintain transparency and focus light on to the retina. However, the mechanisms by which these processes are maintained, or disrupted leading to a loss of transparency, are likely to differ in some cases between animals and humans. To allow comparison to take place, human in vitro models have been developed, ranging from whole organ culture to the generation of human lens cell lines. All have their merits and limitations, but as a whole, they permit extensive studies of lens cell behaviour and function to be carried out. Together, these in vitro methods allow the biological events of the lens to be further understood. Moreover, they could help identify the mechanisms that give rise to cataract and posterior capsule opacification, a problem that occurs following surgery, providing therapeutic targets for their prevention.
This article was published in Environ Toxicol Pharmacol
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Ophthalmology