Enhancing stem cell delivery to the trabecular meshwork using magnetic nanoparticles
Tweed, Kelsey Eileen
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The trabecular meshwork (TM) is a structure in the eye responsible for the drainage of aqueous humor. Due to the reduced cellularity found in the TM during glaucoma, TM function is reduced, resulting in elevated intraocular pressure. Stem cell therapies could provide a novel treatment option if cell delivery can be targeted to the TM. The purpose of this study is to determine if delivery of stem cells, labeled with Prussian blue magnetic nanocubes, delivered to the TM can be enhanced with magnetic field application. For delivery experiments, anterior segments of porcine eyes, were maintained in organ culture and perfused at physiological flow rates. Stem cells labeled with magnetic nanoparticles were injected intracamerally and steered to the TM region with a magnetic field. Confocal fluorescent imaging showed an increase in the delivery of stem cells to the TM when compared to control with no magnet. This novel technique for delivering stem cells may allow for future research into cell therapies for glaucoma which directly target the TM. Such a treatment could benefit the millions of individuals who suffer from glaucoma.