Retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells were obtained from human cadaver eyes and grown to confluence in 16 mm wells. A sterile intact rabbit vitreous body was isolated and placed on the RPE monolayer. RPE cells with fibrocyte-like morphology appeared over the RPE monolayer within 4 to 6 days. These rapidly proliferating cells were observed to extend cellular processes and migrate into the vitreous body. Migration of the RPE cells progressed over 20 to 40 days, at which time bipolar RPE cells were found in multiple layers of the vitreous body. The contractile properties of the migrating RPE cells were evident as 24% of vitreous bodies contracted into a dense cellular gel. This study provides a model of migration of RPE cells in the vitreous and allows study of the interaction of RPE with the intact vitreous gel.
- Proliferative vitreoretinopathy
- Retinal pigment epithelium
ASJC Scopus subject areas