Navigation Links
'Petri dish lens' gives hope for new eye treatments
Date:1/31/2013

A cure for congenital sight impairment caused by lens damage is closer following research by scientists at Monash University.

Associate Professor Tiziano Barberi and Dr Isabella Mengarelli from the Australian Regenerative Medicine Institute at Monash University are closer to growing parts of the human eye in the lab. They have, for the first time, derived and purified lens epithelium - the embryonic tissue from which the lens of the eye develops. The purity of the cells paves the way for future applications in regenerative medicine.

Further, the researchers caused these precursor cells to differentiate further into lens cells, providing a platform to test new drugs on human tissue in the lab.

Pluripotent stem cells have the ability to become any cell in the human body including, skin, blood and brain matter. Once the stem cells have begun to differentiate, the challenge for researchers is to control the process and produce only the desired, specific cells.

Using a technology known as fluorescence activated cell sorting (FACS), Associate Professor Barberi and his team were able to identify the precise combination of protein markers expressed in the lens epithelium that enabled them to isolate those cells from the rest of the cultures. Most markers are common to more than one type of cell, making it challenging to determine the exact mix of markers unique to the desired cells.

Associate Professor Barberi said this breakthrough would eventually help cure visual impairment caused by congenital cataracts or severe damage to the lens from injury through lens transplants.

"The lens has, to some extent, the ability to heal well following surgical intervention. However, with congenital cataracts, the fault is wired into the DNA, so the lens will re-grow with the original impairment. This problem is particularly prevalent in developing countries," he said.

Combined with advances in producing pluripotent stem cells from fully-differentiated adult cells, the research will also progress treatments for eye diseases.

"In the future, we will be able to take adult skin cells, for example, and turn back the clock to produce stem cells. From there, using processes like we have developed for lens epithelium, we will be able to produce diseased cells - an invaluable asset for medical research," Associate Professor Barberi said.

The researchers will now focus on creating a lens more closely resembling a human eye in the lab.

"The lens cells that we created in the petri dish are organised differently to those in a human eye. The next challenge is mimicking nature more perfectly," Associate Professor Barberi said.


'/>"/>
Contact: Emily Walker
emily.walker@monash.edu
61-399-034-844
Monash University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Persistence or extinction: Through a mathematical lens
2. Cost-effective production of infrared lenses
3. Self-assembling nanocubes for next generation antennas and lenses
4. Oscillating gel gives synthetic materials the ability to speak
5. Location, location, location: Membrane residence gives proteases novel abilities
6. New ancient shark species gives insight into origin of great white
7. New brain gene gives us edge over apes, study suggests
8. New model gives hands-on help for learning the secrets of molecules
9. Exome sequencing gives cheaper, faster diagnosis in heterogeneous disease
10. Esther B. OKeeffe Foundation gives $2 million to the Scripps Research Institute
11. Analysis of speed of Greenland glaciers gives new insight for rising sea level
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/5/2017)... April 5, 2017 Today HYPR Corp. ... the server component of the HYPR platform is officially ... the end-to-end security architecture that empowers biometric authentication across ... has already secured over 15 million users across the ... of connected home product suites and physical access represent ...
(Date:4/3/2017)... 3, 2017  Data captured by IsoCode, ... detected a statistically significant association between the ... treatment and objective response of cancer patients ... predict whether cancer patients will respond to ... well as to improve both pre-infusion potency testing ...
(Date:3/30/2017)... , March 30, 2017 Trends, opportunities ... (physiological and behavioral), by technology (fingerprint, AFIS, iris recognition, ... recognition, and others), by end use industry (government and ... immigration, financial and banking, and others), and by region ... , Asia Pacific , and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:7/26/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... July 26, 2017 , ... ... Us Research Program at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), will be one ... This annual conference provides a platform for a multi-stakeholder discussion on the latest ...
(Date:7/25/2017)... Falls, Wisconsin (PRWEB) , ... July 25, 2017 , ... ... for the food and beverage industry, offers Citri-Fi® 125. This natural citrus fiber is ... to thicken and extend real tomato in sauces, condiments and spreads. Today, more than ...
(Date:7/24/2017)... ... July 24, 2017 , ... Charm Sciences, Inc. is pleased to announce ... Conference on Interstate Milk Shipments (NCIMS) Laboratory Committee and Appendix N Committee as a ... 1, 2017. , The NCIMS voted at its annual meeting in April, 2015 to ...
(Date:7/24/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... July 24, ... ... Analyst, Kenny Soulstring, today announced that the stock market news outlet had ... risk assessment diagnostic testing that screens and identifies exposure, progression and risk ...
Breaking Biology Technology: