Purpose: To determine the extracellular matrix proteins involved in the formation of human granular and lattice type I corneal stromal dystrophies, the expression patterns of fibrillin-2, tenascin-C, matrilin-2, and matrilin-4 were compared in human corneal stromal dystrophy samples.
Methods: Ten cases of granular dystrophy, 7 cases of lattice dystrophy, and 6 normal corneal buttons collected during corneal transplantation were examined for their expression patterns of fibrillin-2, tenascin-C, matrilin-2, and matrilin-4 by immunohistochemistry.
Results: Highly elevated fibrillin-2, tenascin-C, matrilin-2, and matrilin-4 were observed in the epithelial layer of both granular and lattice type I dystrophies. Fibrillin-2, tenascin-C, and matrilin-4 in the granular dystrophy and all antibodies in the lattice dystrophy showed statistically significant staining in the corneal stroma (p<0.05). Interestingly, fibrillin-2, matrilin-2, and matrilin-4 stained significantly in amyloid plaques of lattice type 1 dystrophy.
Conclusions: Fibrillin-2, tenascin-C, matrilin-2, and matrilin-4 may be markers of the pathogenesis of either granular or lattice type I corneal dystrophy, as revealed by immunohistochemical analysis. Each molecule seems to be involved in the regeneration and reorganization of the corneal matrix in granular and lattice type I dystrophies.