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A Closer Look at Keeler’s Amniotic Ocular Matrix

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An amniotic membrane (AM) is designed for use with certain corneal and conjunctival diseases. The amniotic membrane helps in the healing of wounds and can help prevent the formation of scar tissue because it has powerful anti-scarring and antifibrotic properties. 

Although AM has typically been transplanted through the use of fibrin glue and sutures, the emergence of a sutureless amniotic membrane is proving to be a less invasive alternative with promising outcomes. With the in-office availability of AM, you'll be able to treat a vast range of conditions in a rapid, efficient, and highly effective manner. 

At Keeler, we're proud to offer the Merakris Opticyte Amniotic Ocular Matrix, which is a human amniotic membrane disc processed to retain the native extracellular matrix properties and morphologic structure. Let's take a closer look at the amniotic membrane as well as the innovative Opticyte amniotic ocular matrix. 

What Is Amniotic Membrane?

Amniotic membrane is an avascular fetal membrane that can be harvested in a sterile environment through elective cesarean sections. It's made up of three different layers: 

  • Basement membrane 
  • Epithelium
  • Stroma

Before the membrane is used, the donors are rigorously screened for possible diseases. Even after the membrane is extracted, it's treated with a vast range of broad-spectrum antibiotics. 

What Are the Benefits of Amniotic Membrane?

There are several desirable characteristics of the amniotic membrane that make it suitable for treating ocular surface problems.

  • It functions like a physical barrier, which protects conjunctival and corneal epithelium through the healing process.
  • Limits pain and discomfort caused by eyelid friction over the surface.
  • Promotes epithelial growth through adhesion, migration, and differentiation.
  • Reduces inflammation and inhibits fibroblast growth.
  • It has antimicrobial properties and can block angiogenesis.
  • It can be implanted without concern of rejection due to its histocompatibility antigens.

Two Types of Amniotic Membrane

In general, there are two primary types of amniotic membrane available for in-office use. Both variations are offered in different sizes and thickness based on clinical needs.

Dehydrated Amniotic Membrane

The Opticyte Amniotic Ocular Matrix that we offer here at Keeler is a dehydrated Amniotic Membrane. A dehydrated Amniotic Membrane is preserved through the use of a vacuum with low-temperature heat, which retains the devitalized cellular components. In contrast to cryopreserved tissue, dehydrated AM can be kept at room temperature for years. It is beneficial to have on hand for unplanned usage since you do not have to let it thaw. The graft will rehydrate when it comes in contact with the natural tears of the eye.  

Cryopreserved Amniotic Membrane

The cryopreservation of the amniotic membrane involves slowly freezing the tissue at -80-degrees C. The use of a DMEM/glycerol preservation media facilitates a slow rate of freezing without the formation of ice. This technique results in the retention of extracellular matrix compounds that promote healing and anti-inflammatory effects, including:

  • Collagen
  • Growth factors
  • Heavy-chain hyaluronic acids
  • Fibronectin

Then the tissue is stored in a freezer that can sustain -80-degrees C. Before use, the tissue must be left out to thaw to room temperature. 

Merakris Opticyte Amniotic Ocular Repair Matrix 

The Merakris Opticyte Amniotic Ocular Matrix is a human amniotic membrane disc

processed to retain the native extracellular matrix properties and morphologic structure. Opticyte Matrix provides an ophthalmic barrier to the corneal surface and supports cell attachment and ingrowth post-surgical treatment. 

It is intended for use as a protective covering and extracellular matrix corneal support. When used as a corneal surface barrier, the Opticyte Matrix is intended to provide an optimal biological barrier during the healing/re-epithelialization of the cornea with minimal scarring. 

Because the Opticyte Matrix uses the dehydrated method, it never has to be defrosted and is always ready to go when you need it. When ready to use, there is no need to worry about which side goes up or down as both sides are usable.

Procedures & Conditions Performed & Treated with Opticyte

While most physicians associate amniotic membrane corneal grafts as a solution for one or two conditions, the Merakris Opticyte Amniotic Ocular Matrix can be used to perform much more! The procedures you can perform with Opticyte include:

  • Excision or transposition of pterygium; with graft.
  • Placement of amniotic membrane on the ocular surface; without sutures.
  • Placement of amniotic membrane on the ocular surface; single layer, sutured.
  • Ocular surface reconstruction; amniotic membrane transplantation, multiple layers.
  • Aqueous shunt to extraocular equatorial plate reservoir, external approach; with graft.
  • Revision of aqueous shunt to extraocular equatorial plate reservoir.

Some of the most common diagnosis codes that can be used when treating conditions with the Opticyte Amniotic Ocular Matrix include:

  • Pterygium of eye.
  • Conjunctival degenerations and deposits.
  • Conjunctival granuloma.
  • Symblepharon.
  • Conjunctival edema.
  • Conjunctivochalasis.
  • Corneal ulcer.
  • Keratoconjunctivitis.
  • Glaucoma secondary to other eye disorders.
  • Central corneal opacity.
  • Other corneal scars and opacities.
  • Bullous keratopathy.
  • Band keratopathy.
  • Open-angle glaucoma.
  • Primary open-angle glaucoma.
  • Chronic angle-closure glaucoma.
  • Primary angle-closure glaucoma.
  • Intermittent angle-closure glaucoma.
  • Glaucoma secondary to eye trauma.
  • Glaucoma secondary to eye inflammation.
  • Glaucoma secondary to drugs.

Questions? Contact Us Today!

For more than 100 years, Keeler has been a leader in the optometric industry, offering cutting-edge diagnostic equipment and solutions. We offer a vast range of different ophthalmic and optometry supplies and equipment, including: 

At the same time, we regularly partner with different high-tech ophthalmic solution providers, general medical instrument manufacturers, veterinary diagnostic specialists, and more to provide specialized OEM manufacturing.

Contact Keeler today to learn more about the Amniotic Ocular Matrix or visit Keeler Global for partnerships and other opportunities.

About the Author Eugene VanArsdale

Eugene is the Director of Marketing Communications at Keeler Instruments. He has been with Keeler since 1982 and is co-holder of two patents for the company. Eugene has a true passion for the eye care industry and has dedicated himself to understanding the ins and outs of the optometric and ophthalmic equipment market.