Comparison of the effect of multipurpose contact lens solutions on the viability of cultured corneal epithelial cells

Cont Lens Anterior Eye. 2009 Aug;32(4):171-5. doi: 10.1016/j.clae.2009.05.002. Epub 2009 Jun 21.


Purpose: To determine the effect of four marketed multipurpose contact lens solutions (MPSs) on corneal epithelial cell viability.

Methods: Comparison of the effect of MPS A (Renu MultiPlus, Bausch & Lomb), MPS B (OPTI-FREE Express, Alcon), MPS C (AQuify, CibaVision), and MPS D (OPTI-FREE RepleniSH, Alcon) on cell viability was performed by quantifying cellular ATP content, resazurin reduction, and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) release in transformed human corneal epithelial cells (HCEpiC) and primary bovine corneal epithelial cells (BCEpiC).

Results: Significant reductions in cellular ATP content were observed at 40% solution and above with both MPS B and MPS D, compared to at 100% only for MPS A and MPS C, and similar results were obtained in BCEpiC. Effects on resazurin reduction were also less in HCEpiC exposed to increasing doses of MPS A and MPS C than in cells exposed to MPS B and MPS D. After 15 min, HCEpiC viability measured by both resazurin reduction and cellular ATP levels was significantly lower for cells exposed to MPS B, MPS D, and MPS C, while HCEpiC exposed to MPS A were not affected. MPS B and MPS D reduced cell viability more than MPS A and MPS C over a 2-h time course in both HCEpiC and BCEpiC.

Conclusions: Both MPS B and MPS D can cause large decreases in the viability of cultured corneal epithelial cells even with just a 2h exposure at multiple doses. Significant reduction in cell viability is evident at brief 15-30 min exposures. In contrast, MPS A and MPS C have significantly less effect on the cell viability of corneal epithelial cells at multiple doses, after these short exposure times.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adenosine Triphosphate / analysis
  • Animals
  • Anti-Infective Agents / administration & dosage
  • Cattle
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Contact Lens Solutions / chemistry
  • Contact Lens Solutions / pharmacology*
  • Epithelial Cells / chemistry
  • Epithelial Cells / drug effects*
  • Epithelial Cells / metabolism
  • Epithelial Cells / physiology*
  • Epithelium, Corneal / chemistry
  • Epithelium, Corneal / cytology*
  • Epithelium, Corneal / metabolism
  • Humans
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • L-Lactate Dehydrogenase / analysis
  • Oxazines / metabolism
  • Oxidation-Reduction / drug effects
  • Time Factors
  • Xanthenes / metabolism


  • Anti-Infective Agents
  • Contact Lens Solutions
  • Oxazines
  • Xanthenes
  • resazurin
  • Adenosine Triphosphate
  • L-Lactate Dehydrogenase