Nov 20, 2019

Dose-dependent benzalkonium chloride toxicity imparts ocular surface epithelial changes with features of dry eye disease

The Ocular Surface
Richard ZhangNick Di Girolamo


Inclusion of the preservative benzalkonium chloride (BAC) in ophthalmic solutions is prevalent, despite the noted potential for exacerbating dry eye disease (DED). Whilst studies incorporating BAC have assessed its' effects as a mouse model of DED, the impact on limbal epithelia is under-studied. Our investigation aimed to comprehensively assess the impact of different BAC dosing regimens and their suitability as a mouse model of DED. C57BL/6J mice (n = 72) were administered topical BAC (0.05-0.2%) over 7 days. Fluorescein staining, corneal smoothness index, and immuno-histological analyses were applied to determine architectural and cellular changes on the ocular surface following BAC treatment. The effect of BAC (0.0001-0.01%) on cultivated primary mouse corneo-limbal epithelial cells (CLECs) (n = 6) was examined using morphological and functional assays. Whilst 0.2% BAC induced severe corneal epithelial defects, 0.1% BAC dispensed once daily over 7 days, induced punctate fluorescein staining without detriment to corneal smoothness. Histochemical staining revealed disorganized basal corneal epithelial cells with enlarged cytoplasmic halos. Furthermore, PAS+ goblet cells were decreased. BAC treatment also modulated K14 express...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Treatment Protocols
Histology Procedure
C57BL/6 Mouse
Benzalkonium Chloride
Toxic Effect
Corneal Epithelial Cell
Structure of Intestinal Epithelium

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