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Cultivation of Human Microvascular Endothelial Cells on Topographical Substrates to Mimic the Human Corneal Endothelium
T-Lab, #05-01, The Mechanobiology Institute Singapore, National University of Singapore, 5A Engineering Drive 1, 117411, Singapore
Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Singapore, 8 College Road, 169857, Singapore
Department of Bioengineering, National University of Singapore, EA-03-12, 9 Engineering Drive 1, 117576,Singapore
Department of Surgery, National University of Singapore, 119228, Singapore
Authors contributed equally to the work.
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 31 October 2012; in revised form: 30 January 2013 / Accepted: 25 February 2013 / Published: 21 March 2013
Abstract: Human corneal endothelial cells have a limited ability to replicate in vivo and in vitro. Allograft transplantation becomes necessary when an accident or trauma results in excessive cell loss. The reconstruction of the cornea endothelium using autologous cell sources is a promising alternative option for therapeutic or in vitro drug testing applications. The native corneal endothelium rests on the Descemet’s membrane, which has nanotopographies of fibers and pores. The use of synthetic topographies mimics the native environment, and it is hypothesized that this can direct the behavior and growth of human microvascular endothelial cells (HMVECs) to resemble the corneal endothelium. In this study, HMVECs are cultivated on substrates with micron and nano-scaled pillar and well topographies. Closely packed HMVEC monolayers with polygonal cells and well-developed tight junctions were formed on the topographical substrates. Sodium/potassium (Na+/K+) adenine triphosphatase (ATPase) expression was enhanced on the microwells substrate, which also promotes microvilli formation, while more hexagonal-like cells are found on the micropillars samples. The data obtained suggests that the use of optimized surface patterning, in particular, the microtopographies, can induce HMVECs to adopt a more corneal endothelium-like morphology with similar barrier and pump functions. The mechanism involved in cell contact guidance by the specific topographical features will be of interest for future studies.
Keywords: nanotopography; cornea endothelium; cornea regeneration; microvascular endothelial cells; contact guidance
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MDPI and ACS Style
Chua, J.S.; Liew, L.X.; Yim, E.K. Cultivation of Human Microvascular Endothelial Cells on Topographical Substrates to Mimic the Human Corneal Endothelium. J. Funct. Biomater. 2013, 4, 38-58.
Chua JS, Liew LX, Yim EK. Cultivation of Human Microvascular Endothelial Cells on Topographical Substrates to Mimic the Human Corneal Endothelium. Journal of Functional Biomaterials. 2013; 4(1):38-58.
Chua, Jie S.; Liew, Li X.; Yim, Evelyn K. 2013. "Cultivation of Human Microvascular Endothelial Cells on Topographical Substrates to Mimic the Human Corneal Endothelium." J. Funct. Biomater. 4, no. 1: 38-58.