Original Papers

International Ophthalmology

, Volume 16, Issue 3, pp 167-176

First online:

Biophysical characteristics of the Meibomian lipid layer underin vitro conditions

  • Thomas KaercherAffiliated withAugenklinik Ludwigshafen
  • , Dietmar MöbiusAffiliated withMax-Planck-Institut für Biophysikalische Chemie, Arbeitsgruppe Molekular organisierte Systeme
  • , Rüdiger WeltAffiliated withAugenklinik Ludwigshafen

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The biophysical behaviour of the Meibomian gland secretion was tested underin vitro conditions. Thereby, simultaneous recording of surface pressure and surface potential was performed. The Meibomian lipid layer was compared with other surface-active components like polyvinylalcohol and polyvinylpyrrolidone. On the other hand, Eledoisin was tested as an example for a surface-inactive substance. An attempt was made to describe the biophysical interaction between a given artificial tear substitute and the Meibomian lipid layer. With respect to the surface potential Dipalmitoyl-phosphatidyl-choline was established as an analogue for Meibomian gland secretion. Fluorescence measurements in the presence of a cyanine dye (1 N,N′ dioctadecyloxacarbocyanine) were used as a method to localize the site of the characteristic potential change. From the fluorescence spectra under compression we conclude that the molecular change takes place at the lipid-subphase interface of the Meibomian lipid layer.

Key words

Meibomian gland secretion surface potential surface pressure