Amniotic membrane inhibits squamous metaplasia of human conjunctival epithelium.


Squamous metaplasia is a common pathological process that occurs in the ocular surface epithelium. At present, there is no effective treatment for this abnormality. In the current study, we established an ex vivo conjunctival squamous metaplasia model by culturing human conjunctival tissues at an air-liquid interface for durations of up to 12 days. We then investigated the effects of amniotic membrane (AM) on squamous metaplasia through coculture of conjunctival tissues with AM or AM extract. We found that metaplasia features such as hyperproliferation and abnormal epidermal differentiation of conjunctival epithelium could be inhibited by AM or its extract. In addition, existing squamous metaplasia of conjunctival epithelium could be reversed to a nearly normal phenotype by AM. The mechanism by which AM prevents squamous metaplasia may involve downregulation of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase and Wnt signaling pathways, which were activated in conjunctival explants cultured with an airlift technique. In conclusion, AM can inhibit and reverse squamous metaplasia of conjunctival epithelium. This finding may shed new light on prevention and treatment of diseases that involve epithelial squamous metaplasia.

DOI: 10.1152/ajpcell.00375.2010

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@article{Tan2011AmnioticMI, title={Amniotic membrane inhibits squamous metaplasia of human conjunctival epithelium.}, author={Yehui Tan and Fangfang Qiu and Yang-Luowa Qu and Cheng Li and Yi Shao and Qiguo Xiao and Zu-guo Liu and Wei Li}, journal={American journal of physiology. Cell physiology}, year={2011}, volume={301 1}, pages={C115-25} }