Tissue engineering for conjunctival reconstruction: established methods and future outlooks

Stefan Schrader, Maria Notara, Michele Beaconsfield, Stephen J Tuft, Julie T Daniels, Gerd Geerling
Current Eye Research 2009, 34 (11): 913-24
Reconstruction of the conjunctiva is an essential part of ocular surface regeneration, especially if an extensive area or the whole ocular surface is affected, such as in patients with ocular cicatricial pemphigoid, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis, or chemical/thermal burns. In these situations, corneal reconstruction almost inevitably fails unless the conjunctival surface is first repaired and a deep fornix is restored. The growing field of tissue engineering and advances in stem cell research offer promising new alternatives for these challenges. This article reviews the present approaches for reconstruction of the conjunctival surface, considering the established strategies and new potential methodologies.

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