A histologic study of lens regeneration in aphakic rabbits

Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 1990 Mar 1;31(3):540-7.


Lens regeneration occurs in New Zealand albino rabbits after endocapsular lens extraction, which leaves the anterior and posterior lens capsules relatively intact. Slit-lamp photography, histologic studies, and lens protein analysis confirmed the differentiation of lens fibers. In the current study, we performed a sequential analysis of the regenerating rabbit lens. After endocapsular phacoemulsification and irrigation/aspiration of the lens, rabbits were sacrificed at different time points for histologic evaluation. Similarities with embryologic development of the lens were evident, although in some sections, abnormal cellular proliferation occurred. By the 6th day after surgery, a monolayer of lens epithelial cells lined both the anterior and posterior capsules. At 1 month, the posterior epithelial cells had elongated, and nuclei had migrated anteriorly. At 2 months, lens cells were differentiating at the equatorial zone with gradual elongation, anterior migration of nuclei, and eventual loss of nuclei.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Aphakia / metabolism
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cell Division
  • Epithelial Cells
  • Epithelium / physiology
  • Lens Capsule, Crystalline / surgery
  • Lens, Crystalline / anatomy & histology
  • Lens, Crystalline / physiology*
  • Photography
  • Rabbits
  • Regeneration / physiology*