Concentrations of mitomycin C in rabbit corneal tissue and aqueous humor after topical administration

Cornea. 2006 Dec;25(10 Suppl 1):S20-3. doi: 10.1097/01.ico.0000247208.93638.92.


Purpose: To study the aqueous and corneal pharmacokinetics of mitomycin C (MMC) after single topical administration to the central cornea and to evaluate the effects of different concentrations and different application times on the aqueous concentration of MMC.

Methods: Mechanical epithelium debridement of the central 7.5 mm of the cornea was performed in New Zealand white rabbits, and a sponge soaked in 0.02% MMC solution was placed on the denuded corneal stroma for 2 minutes. Aqueous fluid and central corneal tissues samples were taken at 0.5, 1, 2, and 3 hours thereafter. MMC concentration of the samples was analyzed by high-performance liquid chromatography and evaluated at different exposure times (range: 15-120 seconds) and concentrations of applied MMC (range: 0.005%-0.04%).

Results: Peak corneal concentration was 3.728 +/- 2.547 microg/g at 30 minutes after topical administration. Maximum aqueous concentration was 0.380 +/- 0.038 microg/mL at 1 hour after topical application. The aqueous concentration of MMC increased in a dose-dependent manner with increasing exposure time and application concentration. Aqueous MMC concentration increased at a higher rate with change of applied concentration than with exposure time.

Conclusion: Good penetration of MMC through central bare cornea may be noxious to endothelial cells. Reducing concentration or decreasing exposure time seems a good modality to reduce potential MMC toxicity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Topical
  • Alkylating Agents / administration & dosage
  • Alkylating Agents / pharmacokinetics*
  • Animals
  • Aqueous Humor / metabolism*
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Cornea / metabolism*
  • Corneal Stroma / drug effects
  • Mitomycin / administration & dosage
  • Mitomycin / pharmacokinetics*
  • Rabbits


  • Alkylating Agents
  • Mitomycin