The cornea is the clear front of the eye and it is covered by an epithelium which is renewed by stem cells located at its periphery, in a region known as the limbus. These so-named limbal stem cells can become deficient due to hereditary or acquired causes resulting in the painful and blinding disease of limbal stem cell deficiency. The treatment of limbal stem cell deficiency includes the transplantation of healthy limbal tissue or cultured limbal epithelial cells. This manuscript describes the patents involved in this field of regenerative medicine, including the most recent patents filed. The concepts, procedures and devices outlined in recent patent applications will be reviewed.
Keywords: Amniotic membrane, cornea, embryonic stem cells, limbal stem cells, patents, stem cells, transplantation
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