We characterized the mucus glyconjugates produced by goblet and non-goblet epithelial cells in asymptomatic contact lens (CL) wearers. We employed four lectins (proteins of vegetal origin which specifically recognize glycosidic residues: WGA, PNA, SBA and ConA) conjugated with colloidal gold as ultrastructural marker, at Transmission Electron Microscopy. A computerized quantitative analysis was carried out in order to compare the results from the CL wearers to those from the control patients. Goblet cells produce different amount of glycosidic residues, in particular, a significant decrease in the distribution of sialic acid, N-acetylglucosamine, N-acetylgalactosamine, galactose-N-acetylgalactosamine and mannose was observed. The content of glycosidic residues in the mucus vesicles of the non-goblet epithelial cells appeared unchanged as to the normal situation. We speculate that the CL could possibly contribute to the failure of the tear film stability by altering the production of mucus.
|Number of pages||7|
|Publication status||Published - 1987|
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