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Open AccessArticle

A Theoretical Approach for the Electrochemical Characterization of Ciliary Epithelium

1
Dipartimento di Matematica, Politecnico di Milano, 20133 Milano MI, Italy
2
Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, USA
3
Department of Mathematics, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, USA
4
Department of Mathematics, George Washington University, Washington, DC 20052, USA
5
Basque Center for Applied Mathematics, Bilbao 48009, Spain
6
Department of Ophthalmology, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital, New York, NY 10029, USA
7
Eye Clinic, University of Pavia, 27100 Pavia, Italy
8
Scientific Institute for Research, Hospitalization and Healthcare(IRCCS) - Fondazione Bietti, 00198 Rome, Italy
9
School of Medicine, Indiana University, Indianapolis, IN 47405, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 December 2019 / Revised: 19 January 2020 / Accepted: 19 January 2020 / Published: 23 January 2020
The ciliary epithelium (CE) is the primary site of aqueous humor (AH) production, which results from the combined action of ultrafiltration and ionic secretion. Modulation of ionic secretion is a fundamental target for drug therapy in glaucoma, and therefore it is important to identify the main factors contributing to it. As several ion transporters have been hypothesized as relevant players in CE physiology, we propose a theoretical approach to complement experimental methods in characterizing their role in the electrochemical and fluid-dynamical conditions of CE. As a first step, we compare two model configurations that differ by (i) types of transporters included for ion exchange across the epithelial membrane, and by (i) presence or absence of the intracellular production of carbonic acid mediated by the carbonic anhydrase enzyme. The proposed model configurations do not include neurohumoral mechanisms such as P2Y receptor-dependent, cAMP, or calcium-dependent pathways, which occur in the ciliary epithelium bilayer and influence the activity of ion transporters, pumps, and channels present in the cell membrane. Results suggest that one of the two configurations predicts sodium and potassium intracellular concentrations and transmembrane potential much more accurately than the other. Because of its quantitative prediction power, the proposed theoretical approach may help relate phenomena at the cellular scale, that cannot be accessed clinically, with phenomena occurring at the scale of the whole eye, for which clinical assessment is feasible. View Full-Text
Keywords: aqueous humor; ciliary epithelium; ultrafiltration; ionic secretion; ion transporters; physiology; electrochemical conditions; fluid-dynamical conditions; mathematical model; simulation aqueous humor; ciliary epithelium; ultrafiltration; ionic secretion; ion transporters; physiology; electrochemical conditions; fluid-dynamical conditions; mathematical model; simulation
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Sacco, R.; Guidoboni, G.; Jerome, J.W.; Bonifazi, G.; Marazzi, N.M.; Verticchio Vercellin, A.C.; Lang, M.S.; Harris, A. A Theoretical Approach for the Electrochemical Characterization of Ciliary Epithelium. Life 2020, 10, 8.

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