Human corneal epithelial cells, grown in the lab, are being used in preclinical trials, evaluating if it is possible to enhance the photorefractive keratectomy (PRK) procedure, according to a statement from the trial organizer, International Stem Cell Corporation (ISCO). The stem cell line being used in these preclinical trials is phSC-Hhom-4, ISCO's proprietary parthenogenetic homozygous line.
ISCO is currently undertaking extensive testing of its cell technology to discover potential clinical applications. Paul H. Chen, MD of North County Laser Eye Associates, California, US, who developed the cell transfer technology being used by ISCO, is assisting in the trial.
ISCO hopes that this preclinical testing will lead to FDA-approved clinical trials, which will assess the efficacy of ISCO's lab-grown human cells to improve postoperative corneal healing.