Methacrylated gelatin hydrogels as corneal stroma substitutes: in vivo study

Burcu, Ayse
Gedikoglu, Gokhan
Telek, Hande H.
Ornek, Firdevs
Hasırcı, Vasıf Nejat
Methacrylated gelatin (GelMA) hydrogels were prepared to serve as corneal stroma equivalents. They were highly transparent (ca. 95% at 700 nm), mechanically strong and withstood handling and had high human corneal keratocyte viability (98%) after 21 days of culture period. In order to test the in vivo performance of the cell free GelMA hydrogels a pilot in vivo study was carried out using eyes of two white New Zealand rabbits. Hydrogel was implanted in a mid-stromal pocket created and without suture fixation, and observed for 8 weeks under a slit lamp. No edema, ulcer formation, inflammation or infection was observed in both the control (sham) and hydrogel implanted corneas. Corneal vascularization on week 3 was treated with one dose of anti-VEGF application. Hematoxylin and Eosin staining showed that the hydrogel was integrated with the host tissue with only a minimal foreign body reaction. Results demonstrated some degradation in the construct within 8 weeks as evidenced by the decrease of the diameter of the hydrogel from 4 mm to 2.6 mm. High transparency, adequate mechanical strength, biocompatibility and well integration with the host tissue, indicates that this hydrogel is a viable alternative to the current methods for the treatment of corneal blindness and deserves testing on larger number of rabbits and more extensively using microscopy, histology and immune histochemistry.


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Cell-laden methacrylated gelatin (GelMA) hydrogels with high (approximately 90%) transparency were prepared to mimic the natural form and function of corneal stroma. They were synthesized from GelMA with a methacrylation degree of 70% as determined by nuclear magnetic resonance. Hydrogels were strong enough to withstand handling. Stability studies showed that 87% of the GelMA hydrogels remained after 21 days in phosphate buffered saline (PBS). Cell viability in the first 2 days was over 90% for the human ke...
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In this work, novel antibacterial composites were prepared by using poly(epsilon-caprolactone) (PCL) as the main matrix material, and gentamicin-loaded microspheres composed of beta-tricalcium phosphate (beta-TCP) and gelatin. The purpose is to use this biodegradable material as a support for bone tissue. This composite system is expected to enhance bone regeneration by the presence of beta-TCP and prevent a possible infection that might occur around the defected bone region by the release of gentamicin. Th...
Akbulut, Ural; PEKYARDIMCI, S (Informa UK Limited, 1991-01-01)
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Bostancı, Nazlı Seray; Tezcaner, Ayşen; Hasırcı, Nesrin; Department of Biotechnology (2021-8-10)
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Corneal stroma is a very complex structure, composed of 200 lamellae of oriented collagen fibers. This highly complex nature of cornea is known to be important for its transparency and mechanical integrity. Thus, an artificial cornea design has to take into account this complex structure. In this study, behavior of human corneal keratocytes on collagen films patterned with parallel channels was investigated. Keratocytes proliferated well on films and reached confluency after 7 days in the incubation medium....
Citation Formats
C. BEKTAŞ, A. Burcu, G. Gedikoglu, H. H. Telek, F. Ornek, and V. N. Hasırcı, “Methacrylated gelatin hydrogels as corneal stroma substitutes: in vivo study,” JOURNAL OF BIOMATERIALS SCIENCE-POLYMER EDITION, pp. 1803–1821, 2019, Accessed: 00, 2020. [Online]. Available: