CoQ10-containing eye drops prevent UVB-induced cornea cell damage and increase cornea wound healing by preserving mitochondrial function.
Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2014 Oct 9 ;55(11):7266-71. Epub 2014 Oct 9. PMID: 25301877
PURPOSE: We evaluated the potential protective effects of Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) on human corneal cells and rabbit eyes after ultraviolet B (UVB) exposure and a model of wound healing in rabbit eyes after corneal epithelium removal.
METHODS: Human corneal epithelium cells (HCE) were exposed to a source of UVB radiation (312 nM) in the presence of different CoQ10 concentrations or vehicle. The mitochondrial function and cell survival were evaluated by means of 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazole-2-yl)2,5-diphenyl-tetrazolium (MTT) reduction and lactic dehydrogenase (LDH) release. Furthermore, quantitation of oxygen consumption and mitochondrial membrane potential were conducted. In vivo rabbit models were adopted to evaluate the effect of CoQ10 on UVB-induced conjunctival vessel hyperemia and corneal recovery after ethanol induced corneal lesion.
RESULTS: In UVB-exposed HCE cells, CoQ10 addition led to an increased survival rate and mitochondrial function. Furthermore, oxygen consumption was maintained at control levels and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) decline was completely prevented in the CoQ10-treated cells. Interestingly, in an in vivo model, CoQ10 was able dose-dependently to reduce UVB-induced vessel hyperemia. Finally, in a model of corneal epithelium removal, 12 hours from surgery, animals treated with CoQ10 showed a reduction of damaged area in respect to vehicle controls, which lasted until 48 hours.
CONCLUSIONS: We demonstrated that CoQ10 reduces corneal damages after UVB exposure in vivo and in vitro by preserving mitochondrial function. Also, for the first time to our knowledge we showed that the administration of CoQ10 after corneal epithelium removal promotes corneal wound healing.