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19.04.2019 | Cornea | Ausgabe 6/2019

Graefe's Archive for Clinical and Experimental Ophthalmology 6/2019

Comparison of the efficacy of different cell sources for transplantation in total limbal stem cell deficiency

Graefe's Archive for Clinical and Experimental Ophthalmology > Ausgabe 6/2019
Junyi Wang, Xiaolin Qi, Yanling Dong, Jun Cheng, Hualei Zhai, Qingjun Zhou, Lixin Xie
Wichtige Hinweise
Junyi Wang and Xiaolin Qi contributed equally to this work.

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The purpose of this study was to compare the efficacy of allogeneic cultured limbal epithelial transplantation (ACLET) and cultivated oral mucosal epithelial transplantation (COMET) in treating total limbal stem cell deficiency (LSCD).


In this retrospective cohort study, 73 patients (76 eyes) with total LSCD, including 41 patients (42 eyes) treated with ACLET and 32 patients (34 eyes) receiving COMET, were evaluated. The age, gender and injury cause of all patients were recorded.


The mean follow-up was 23.3 ± 9.9 months in the ACLET group and 16.1 ± 5.8 months in the COMET group. A higher incidence of persistent epithelial defect was observed after COMET (P = 0.023). The overall ocular surface grading scores were all lower in the ACLET group than in the COMET group at 3, 6, and 12 months after surgery and the last follow-up. Kaplan-Meier survival curve analysis demonstrated a significantly higher success rate of ACLET (71.4%), compared with that of COMET (52.9%; P = 0.043). The risk of graft failure was higher in patients with entropion and trichiasis, incomplete eyelid closure and treated with COMET. The graft failure risk rate after COMET was 3.5 times higher than that of ACLET.


For total LSCD patients, ACLET should be prioritized, since limbal epithelial cells have better ability to maintain corneal epithelial integrity and ocular surface stability and benefit the ocular surface when compared with oral mucosal epithelial cells. Preoperative and postoperative eyelid abnormalities should be corrected as early as possible.

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