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In vivo confocal microscopic features of normal limbus
  1. Ammar Miri1,2,
  2. Muhamed Al-Aqaba1,
  3. Ahmad Muneer Otri1,2,
  4. Usama Fares1,
  5. Dalia G Said1,3,
  6. Lana Akram Faraj1,
  7. Harminder S Dua1
  1. 1Division of Ophthalmology and visual sciences, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, England, UK
  2. 2Department of Ophthalmology, Aleppo University, Aleppo, Syria
  3. 3Research Institute of Ophthalmology, Cairo, Egypt
  1. Correspondence to Dr Harminder S Dua, Division of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, B Floor, Eye ENT Centre, Queens Medical Centre, University Hospital, Derby Road, Nottingham NG7 2UH, England, UK; harminder.dua{at}


Aim To describe in vivo confocal microscopy (IVCM) features of the limbus in normal eyes as related to the palisades of Vogt's.

Methods 46 eyes of 29 consecutive volunteers were recruited in this observational study. A detailed examination by IVCM was performed in addition to a routine slit-lamp biomicroscopy. Size and density of corneal and limbal epithelial cells were measured and statistically analysed using SPSS version 8.0 software.

Results Anatomical and morphological features were noted between corneal and limbal cells. Size and density differences reached to significant levels (p<0.05). Different shapes of palisades of Vogt have been described clearly by confocal microscope. Cell-like structures were observed in the peripheral end of the palisades which might represent limbal stem cell crypts.

Conclusions Laser IVCM can be used to establish the features of the normal limbus. The identified features demonstrate quantitative changes in the basal epithelium between the limbus and the central cornea and morphological differences between pigmented or non-pigmented studied subjects. Further studies should be performed to correlate with histology the possible crypts which were observed in this study.

  • Palisades of Vogt
  • confocal microscope
  • cornea
  • iris
  • microbiology
  • infection
  • tears
  • pathology
  • angiogenesis
  • anterior chamber
  • conjunctiva
  • clinical trial
  • degeneration
  • treatment surgery
  • inflammation
  • medical education
  • wound healing
  • eye (tissue) banking

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  • Linked article 300551.

  • Competing interests None.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Ethics approval Ethics approval was provided by Nottingham research ethics committee, No. 06/Q203/46.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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