Heterotopic corneal grafting in mice: A new approach to the study of corneal alloimmunity

J. W. Streilein, J. McCulley, J. Y. Niederkorn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Heterotopic grafting of murine corneas to the thoracic cage of recipient mice affords an opportunity to study the alloimmune rejection process in this well-characterized laboratory species. Immune rejection of cornea allografts can be reliably identified by direct visual, slit-lamp, and histologic observations. Virtually intact syngeneic corneal epithelium and stroma survive at the heterotopic site for at least 21 days. Allogeneic corneal epithelium is destroyed by as early as 7 days, and allogeneic corneal stroma is progressively and completely destroyed by an intense fibrovascular infiltrative process. If Descemet's membrane is preserved, integrity of the stroma and epithelium of syngeneic corneal grafts is preserved, whereas when this membrane is broken, progressive stromal deterioration sets in. This property of Descemet's membrane is particularly apparent in allogeneic corneal grafts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)489-500
Number of pages12
JournalInvestigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1982

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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