Pluripotent Stem Cells in Corneal Engineering

Research Description

  • Restoration of vision using bioengineered replacement corneas may be compromised by immune rejection unless the cells in these constructs are recognized as ‘self’ by the host.
  • New discoveries in stem cell science make it possible to induce skin or hair follicle cells to become stem cells with the potential to become any cell in the body.
  • This project aims use these induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) to differentiate into cells of the cornea for the purposes of cell-based therapy and tissue engineering.
  • The goal of this project is to develop the concept of ‘personalized medicine’ to the treatment of blindness by the use of autologous cells in tissue engineering.