The present study investigated the effect of Na-hyaluronan (Na-HA) on the hemidesmosome morphogenesis in n-heptanol-induced corneal wounds. Central epithelial wounds were induced in the rabbit cornea by applying a 5.5-mm round filter paper, which was soaked in n-heptanol, for 60 s. 1% Na-HA in phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) or PBS alone were topically administered to the wounded cornea 4 times daily for up to 7 days. Epithelial healing rates during the first 2 days were not altered by Na-HA. The number of hemidesmosomes in the basement membrane of the central cornea was significantly increased in both 3- and 7-day groups after treatment with 1% Na-HA. The results suggest that topically applied 1% Na-HA may enhance the formation of hemidesmosomes during the early healing phase in n-heptanol-induced corneal wounds.
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