The proliferation of residual lens epithelial cells following cataract surgery is assumed to be a major cause of posterior capsular opacification. To assess the efficacy of mitomycin-C in preventing posterior capsular opacification, we determined the effective concentration and exposure time of mitomycin-C in inhibiting rabbit lens epithelial cell proliferation. The fourth-passaged rabbit lens epithelial cells were maintained for one day and then exposed to mitomycin-C for 1, 2, 3, and 5 minutes, respectively. There were 9 different plating concentrations of mitomycin-C with two-fold serial dilution. The maintenance of the phenotypic properties of lens epithelial cells was confirmed by continuous transcription of λ-crystalline mRNA determined by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction and the polymorphism of the restriction fragment. Cell proliferation was assayed with 3H-thymidine incorporation into DNA. The fourth-passaged cells maintained the expression of λ-crystalline mRNA, suggesting that they are phenotypically authentic lens epithelial cells. The effective concentrations and exposure time of mitomycin-C were 0.1 mg/ml for 1 minute and 2 minutes, and 0.025 mg/ml for 2 minutes. By these results, we postulated that mitomycin-C at relatively short incubation times could be clinically used for prevention of posterior capsular opacification after cataract surgery.
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