Autoradiographic study of corneal neovascularization induced by chemical cautery

P. C. Burger, G. K. Klintworth

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28 Scopus citations


The corneas of adult rats were cauterized chemically, and the responses of the pericorneal blood vessels and the cellular constituents of the cornea were followed by light microscopic autoradiography after labeling with 3H-thymidine. As in previous experiments, this injury elicited a neovascularization as capillaries sprouted and extended centripetally from the corneoscleral limbus to the cautery site. Chemical cautery induced a response in the epithelium, endothelium and cells is uncertain, but there are many potential interrelationships between the controls of cell division fibroblasts of the cornea as well as in the vascular cells. Elevated labeling indices for the corneal epithelium and endothelium began at 18 and 21 hours after injury, respectively. In all of these corneal cell types, the labeling index returned to control values by 75 hours. The onset and decline of DNA synthesis in corneal fibroblasts paralleled that of the corneal epithelium and endothelium. Labeling indices of vascular cells (endothelial cells and pericytes) increased 21 hours after injury, reached a maximal level at 45 hours, and returned to control values by 1 month after cautery. The first mitoses in vascular endothelial cells and pericytes were noted 36 hours after injury, and the intial capillary sprouts appeared at 39 hours. This study demonstrates that the thymidine incorporation by cells in the pericorneal blood vessels occurs early within the postcauterization period, at least 15 hours before the first mitotic figures are detected in these same vascular cells. The significance of the temporally related elevations in labeling indices of the vascular cells and the cellular constituents of the corneal cells and migration for cells of the vessels, epithelium, endothelium, and corneal stroma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)328-335
Number of pages8
JournalLaboratory Investigation
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1981
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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