Rabbits were hyperimmunised systemically over a 4-week period with bovine serum albumin (BSA) in complete Freund's adjuvants and were subsequently challenged systemically with a massive dose of BSA designed to produce serum sickness. Without any ocular manipulation a spontaneous corneal immune reaction was observed which we termed a 'reverse Wessely phenomenon'. It was due to a reversed sequence of antibody becoming sequestered in the cornea and later responding to antigen entering via the limbal circulation. In the stroma, lymphocytes were prominent and only few polymorphonuclear cells were found, but this may have been due to late sectioning of the corneas tested. The corneal ring formed at the limbus and migrated centripetally ahead of peripheral clouding, which is typical of the Wessely phenomenon. Possible relationships of this reaction with some autoimmune disorders are discussed.
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