Hemoderivative tear substitutes contain various ephiteliotrophic factors, such as growth factors (GF), involved in ocular surface homeostasis without immunogenic properties.
The aim of the present work was the loading of platelet lysate into contact lenses to improve the precorneal permanence of platelet lysate growth factors on the ocular surface to enhance the treatment of corneal lesions.
To this purpose, chondroitin sulfate, a sulfated glycosaminoglycan, which is normally present in the extracellular matrix, was associated with platelet lysate. In fact, chondroitin sulfate is capable of electrostatic interaction with positively charged growth factors, in particular, with bFGF, IGF, VEGF, PDGF and TGF-β, resulting in their stabilization and reduced degradation in solution. In the present work, various types of commercially available contact lenses have been loaded with chondroitin sulfate or chondroitin sulfate in association with platelet lysate to achieve a release of growth factors directly onto the corneal surface lesions. One type of contact lenses (PureVision®) showed in vitro good proliferation properties towards corneal cells and were able to enhance cut closure in cornea constructs.