Topical VEGF-C/D Inhibition Prevents Lymphatic Vessel Ingrowth into Cornea but Does Not Improve Corneal Graft Survival
Vascular endothelial growth factor-C/D (VEGF-C/D) regulates lymphangiogenesis. Ingrowth of lymphatic vessels is negatively associated with corneal transplantation success. In this study, we therefore analyzed the effect local blockade of VEGF-C/D has on inflamed corneas. We used the murine model of suture-induced neovascularization and subsequent high-risk corneal transplantation. Mice were treated with a VEGF-C/D trap prior to transplantation. Topical inhibition of VEGF-C/D significantly reduced lymphatic vessel ingrowth, but increased Macrophage numbers in the cornea. Furthermore, corneal transplantation success was not improved by the topical application of the compound. This study demonstrates that local VEGF-C/D inhibition is insufficient to increases corneal transplantation success, likely due to interaction with immune cells.