New Findings Shed Light on Donor Cornea Storage Solutions

New Findings Shed Light on Donor Cornea Storage Solutions

Dr. Dan Polla, ARVO 2019

Previous studies in the field of corneal transplantation have determined the importance of endothelial cell density in the health of corneal tissue grafts in terms of graft success rate. According to new research presented this week at the 2019 Annual Meeting of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) in Vancouver, differences in the storage media solutions can have an effect on endothelial cell density.

Through the study, a retrospective analysis was conducted on a donor database from the Kansas City-based nonprofit Saving Sight to compare eye bank donor corneal endothelial cell density (ECD) after storage in Optisol GS and Life4°C solutions. The data analyzed included 24,581 donated eye bank corneas from 2011 through 2017 stored in Optisol GS or Life4°C solutions.

This project was led by Daniel Polla, MD, Ophthalmology Resident at Montefiore Medical Center and the Albert Einstein College of Medicine Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, in collaboration with Saving Sight.

“My project looks at the different storage media solutions that donor corneas were stored in from 2011 to 2017 at Saving Sight. The preliminary findings demonstrate a small difference in endothelial cell density after storage in Optisol GS or Life4°C, with a higher ECD after storage in Optisol GS. The differences found between donor corneas in each of the storage media groups may be due to factors that were not accounted for over time such as changes in processing protocols, equipment used to measure ECD, and variability in specular microscopy. While it is possible that Optisol GS better preserves the endothelium, one potential cause for the small difference in ECD between groups is variation in endothelial cell visualization during specular microscopy due to differences in solution color,” said Dr. Polla.

“This research is important to the field of ophthalmology and corneal transplantation because it may influence the way that corneas are stored and/or evaluated prior to transplantation, ultimately leading to better graft success rates and outcomes for patients.” Dr. Polla added.

Saving Sight Chief Business Development Officer Patrick Gore, RN, CEBT, Director of Business Development Lynn Forest-Smith, and Chief Operating Officer Tina Livesay were co-authors on the study. As an eye bank that facilitates eye donation for transplant and research, the Saving Sight team is proud to support this project and to work in collaboration with Montefiore and Drs. Polla, Rand and Chuck.

“We collect a large amount of data on all of our donor cases and corneas as a part of normal operations. This was a great opportunity to have these data parameters analyzed collectively for this study. As an eye bank, this allows us to help researchers advance the field of corneal transplantation to help honor the gift of sight through better recipient outcomes,” said Tina Livesay, Saving Sight Chief Operating Officer.

This study highlights the importance of collaboration between eye banks, medical centers and researchers in advancing the fields of corneal transplantation and ophthalmology.

 

Abstract: 

An analysis of donor corneas stored in Optisol GS and Life4°C solutions

Authors: Daniel J. Polla MD, Gabriel M. Rand MD, Patrick K. Gore RN CEBT, Lynn Forest-Smith CEBT, Tina Livesay CEBT, Roy S. Chuck MD PhD

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Research Findings - ARVO 2019

Dan Polla, MD, Ophthalmology resident at Montefiore Medical Center, details his latest research study with Saving Sight that he will present at ARVO 2019.

New Findings Presented on Factors Associated with DMEK Processing Damage

New Findings Presented on Factors Associated with DMEK Processing Damage

Dr. Gabriel Rand – ARVO 2019

According to new research presented this week at the 2019 Annual Meeting of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) in Vancouver, several potential risk factors, including donor diabetes mellitus, can lead to damage during Descemet Membrane Endothelial Keratoplasty processing.

There are limited studies identifying risk factors for damage when processing Descemet Membrane Endothelial Keratoplasty (DMEK), which has a high processing failure rate as compared to Descemet Stripping Automated Endothelial Keratoplasty (DSAEK). Through a study with lead researcher Gabriel Rand, MD, second year ophthalmology resident at Montefiore Medical Center and the Albert Einstein College of Medicine Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences and Saving Sight, an analysis of potential risk factors was performed. Collaborative research partner, Saving Sight performs a high volume of DMEK processing.

Through the study, a retrospective analysis was completed with logistic regressions on all 385 DMEK tissues processed from 319 eligible donors at Saving Sight from July 2014 to June 2017. The study concluded that eye bank DMEK processing has significant rates of damage and risk factors for processing failure including donor diabetes mellitus, individual technician ability and the technician learning curve.

“Myself, Dr. Chuck and a bunch of us here at Montefiore have been working with Saving Sight to prepare an abstract for ARVO this year,” said Dr. Rand. “The topic of the abstract is the effect that donor diabetes status has on the corneal transplant quality. This is a really important subject because diabetes is a disease that is increasing in prevalence every year and it’s a multisystem disease – it affects every single part of the body, the cornea notwithstanding. There’s really not a tremendous amount of literature on what the potential influences that donor diabetes status has on these cornea transplant tissues. So what our contribution is, is to add to the fund of knowledge and to really examine does a donor diabetes status affect endothelial cell health, does it affect preparation failure rates, things like this, so it’s been a really exciting research project for us.”

Saving Sight Chief Business Development Officer Patrick Gore, RN, CEBT, Director of Business Development Lynn Forest-Smith, and Chief Operating Officer Tina Livesay were co-authors on the study. As an eye bank that facilitates eye donation for transplant and research, the Saving Sight team is proud to support this project and to work in collaboration with Montefiore and Drs. Rand and Chuck.

“It is a privilege for me to work with such a devoted team at Montefiore who want to advance the science of ophthalmology,” said Lynn Forest-Smith, Director of Business Development at Saving Sight. “I have a real passion for the work we do at Saving Sight and teaming up with these folks allows us to take our findings back to the eye banks, apply what we learn to improve our services and ultimately, help more people see.”

This collaborative study helps advance the fields of corneal transplantation and ophthalmology between eye banks, medical centers and researchers and helps identify factors that contribute to better grafts and better outcomes for patients.

Abstract:

Factors associated with eye bank descemet membrane endothelial keratoplasty processing damage

Authors: Gabriel M. Rand MD, Patrick K. Gore RN CEBT, Lynn Forest-Smith CEBT, Tina Livesay CEBT, Roy S. Chuck MD PhD

 

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Research Findings - ARVO 2019

Gabriel Rand, MD, second-year Ophthalmology resident at Montefiore Medical Center, gives an overview of his recent research collaboration with Saving Sight for ARVO 2019

Connect with Saving Sight at ESCRS 2018

Connect with Saving Sight at ESCRS 2018

Patrick Gore at the 2016 ESCRS conference in Copenhagen.

Lets’s connect at  ESCRS 2018!

Our Saving Sight team is excited to be back at the annual European Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgeons (ESCRS) Congress September 22-26, 2018.  We’d love the opportunity to connect with ophthalmologists, surgeons and other eye care professionals while there. Patrick Gore, Chief Business Development Officer at Saving Sight, will be at ESCRS and looks forward to hearing how Saving Sight can best suit your ocular needs in a simple and convenient way. Please reach out to Patrick Gore soon to coordinate a time to connect at the conference.

We look forward to an enriching conference in Vienna!

For additional information: Patrick Gore, Chief Business Development Officer, 816.255.1337

 

 

Meet Us in St. Louis for a DMEK Wet Lab

Meet Us in St. Louis for a DMEK Wet Lab

 

Meet Us in St. Louis for a DMEK Wet Lab

Join Saving Sight in St. Louis on June 2nd for a comprehensive DMEK wet lab with experienced surgeons. The day will include a full morning of didactics and videos followed by a live demonstration of the procedure and the wet lab. Lecturers will cover the DMEK procedure from start to finish and work with you one-on-one to practice the technique. The final day to register is May 17!

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Bausch & Lomb Surgical

3365 Tree Court Industrial Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63122

 

Meet the Wet Lab Faculty

Mark A. Greiner, MD, Instructor & Lab Facilitator

Dr. Mark A. Greiner

Mark A. Greiner, MD, University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine

Dr. Mark Greiner is Associate Medical Director and Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine.

After completing his medical degree and residency in ophthalmology at the University of California at Davis, he completed his fellowship training in Cornea and External Diseases with Mark Terry at Devers Eye Institute in Portland, Oregon. Since joining the faculty at Iowa, Dr. Greiner has pursued his interests in eye banking and endothelial keratoplasty. He currently serves as Associate Medical Director at the Iowa Lions Eye Bank and is a clinician-scientist with a translational research laboratory that focuses on corneal endothelial cell metabolic function and keratoplasty outcomes. Dr. Greiner authored many publications including chapter 131, Surgical Technique of DMEK in the 4th edition of Cornea: Fundamentals, Diagnosis and Management. Read more about Dr. Greiner’s background here.

Shahzad I. Mian, MD, Instructor & Lab Facilitator

Dr. Shahzad I. Mian

Shazad I. Mian, MD, University of Michigan Medical School

Shahzad I. Mian, M.D., is the Terry J. Bergstrom Collegiate Professor for Resident Education in Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences. He also serves the Department as Associate Chair for Education and is an associate professor of ophthalmology and visual sciences the University of Michigan Medical School. Dr. Mian earned his medical degree in 1996 from the Emory University School of Medicine. He then completed a residency at the Wills Eye Hospital of Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia. From 2000-02, he was a fellow in cornea and refractive surgery at Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. He joined the U-M faculty in 2002 as a clinical lecturer in ophthalmology and visual sciences, and he was promoted to associate professor of ophthalmology and visual sciences in 2010. He has served on the board of directors and as a medical director of the Midwest Eye-Banks and currently serves as cornea editor for the Ophthalmic News and Education Network, board member of the Cornea Society, member of the Program Director’s Council and councillor for the American Academy of Ophthalmology. Read more about Dr. Mian’s background here. 

 

 

Geoffrey Hill, MD, Lab Facilitator

Geoffrey Hill, MD, Hill Vision Services

Geoffrey Hill, MD is a cornea specialist and partner at Hill Vision Services in St. Louis, Missouri. Dr. Hill received his undergraduate degree in Biology from the University of Missouri Columbia and received his medical doctorate from St. Louis University. He completed his ophthalmology residency at the John H. Stroger Jr. Hospital of Cook County in Chicago, Il and a fellowship in Cornea and Ocular Surface Disease at the University of Texas Southwestern in Dallas. Dr. Hill is a member of the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgeons. Read more about Dr. Hill’s background here.

 

Marriott St. Louis West

660 Maryville Centre Drive
St. Louis, MO 63141

Hilton St. Louis Frontenac

1335 S. Lindbergh Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 631311

Marriott St. Louis West

Hilton St. Louis Frontenac

Connect with Saving Sight at ESCRS 2017

Lets’s connect at ESCRS 2017!

Our Saving Sight team is excited to be back at the annual European Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgeons (ESCRS) Congress October 7-11, 2017. We’d love the
opportunity to connect with ophthalmologists, surgeons and other eye care professionals while there. Patrick Gore, Chief Business Development Officer at Saving Sight, will be at ESCRS and looks forward to hearing how Saving Sight can best suit your ocular needs in a simple and convenient way. Please reach out to Patrick
Gore soon to coordinate a time to connect at the conference.

We look forward to an enriching conference in Lisbon!

For additional information: Patrick Gore, Chief Business Development Officer, 816.255.1337.

Saving Sight Honors Eye Donors in the 128th Rose Parade

Saving Sight Honors Eye Donors in the 128th Rose Parade

Staff at Capital Region Medical Center dedicated a rose in honor of their
donors on the 14th Annual Donate Life
Rose Parade Float.

Each year, Saving Sight works to coordinate the eye donation process for donors in partner hospitals across Missouri, Kansas and central Illinois. Saving Sight partner relations coordinators meet with the partner hospitals as the year comes to a close to honor the gifts of their donors on a national stage during the annual Tournament of Roses – Rose Parade.

“This year our PRCs met with an administrator at 26 of our partner hospitals and partnered with Midwest Transplant Network to meet with 14 shared hospital partners. The number of hospital administrators who participate in this program is growing each year. It’s a great way for Saving Sight to promote in the local communities the culture of donation within these hospitals,” said Michala Stoker, Director of Partner Relations.

Saving Sight asked each partner hospital to dedicate a rose in honor of the hospital’s eye donors that was carried on the annual Donate Life Rose Parade Float. Each signed a vial with a personal message from the hospital in memory of the hospital’s eye donors. This year, the vial carried a white Akito rose on the Rose Parade Float to honor the donors and help spread the simple, life-giving message that eye, organ and tissue donation heals and saves lives.

Memorial Medical Center dedicated a rose to honor their donors on the 14th Annual Donate Life Rose Parade Float.

“It’s an incredible gift these donors make through eye donation. They forever change the lives of corneal transplant recipients,” said Saving Sight Chief Executive Officer Tony Bavuso. “We’re excited to work with our partner hospitals to honor that gift by dedicating a rose that will be seen around the world as part of this year’s Tournament of Roses Parade and serve as a testament to the healing power of the gift of sight.”

The 128th Annual Tournament of Roses – Rose Parade was broadcast around the world from Pasadena, California on January 2, 2017. The 14th Annual Donate Life Rose Parade Float won the Theme Trophy for their Teammates in Life float that honored the heroes who helped others through the gift of sight and the gift of life.

Across our service region, Saving Sight recovered, processed and placed 3,016 corneas for transplant in 2015. Because of the compassion of donors, families and staff at partner hospitals, Saving Sight changed the lives of an average of eight people every day through the gift of sight.

Over 48,000 corneal transplants took place across the country to restore sight for those in need last year and more than 15,000 Americans gave life through organ donation. Still, today more than 120,000 men, women children await lifesaving organ transplants in the United States. If you haven’t registered as an eye, organ and tissue donor yet, you can make a difference by choosing to give life today at registerme.org.