Experimental eye research

Scleral cross-linking using riboflavin and ultraviolet-a radiation for prevention of progressive myopia in a rabbit model.

PMID 25111424


Our study demonstrates the effect of scleral cross-linking using riboflavin and ultraviolet-A radiation on the development of axial myopia in a rabbit model. Axial length of the eyeball was measured by A-scan ultrasound in 22 New Zealand white rabbits aged 13 days. The right eyes then underwent 360-degree conjunctival peritomy with (experimental group, n = 11) or without (control group, n = 11) scleral cross-linking, followed by tarsorrhaphy. The left eyes served as a control eye. In the experimental group, the right eyeballs were divided into quadrants, and every quadrant had either 2 (n = 8) or 6 (n = 3) scleral irradiation zones, each with an area of 0.2 cm² and radius of 4 mm. Cross-linking was performed by dropping 0.1% dextran-free riboflavin-5-phosphate onto the irradiation zones at 20 s before ultraviolet-A irradiation and every 20 s during the 200-s irradiation time. UVA radiation (370 nm) was applied perpendicular to the sclera at 57 mW/cm² (total UVA light dose, 57 J/cm²). Tarsorrhaphies were removed on day 55, followed by repeated axial-length measurement. In the control group, mean axial length in the right eyes increased from 10.50 ± 0.67 mm at baseline to 15.69 ± 0.39 mm 55 days later, for a mean change of 5.19 ± 0.85 mm. In the experimental group, corresponding values were 10.68 ± 0.74 mm and 14.29 ± 0.3 mm, for a mean change of 3.61 ± 0.76 mm. The between-group difference in the change in mean axial length was statistically significant (p < 0.001, Mann-Whitney nonparametric test). The present manuscript demonstrates that scleral cross-linking with riboflavin and ultraviolet-A radiation effectively prevents occlusion-induced axial elongation in a rabbit model.