Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

A gradient of matrix-bound FGF-2 and perlecan is available to lens epithelial cells

Wu, W.; Tholozan, F.M.; Goldberg, M.W.; Bowen, L.; Wu, J.J.; Quinlan, R.A

A gradient of matrix-bound FGF-2 and perlecan is available to lens epithelial cells Thumbnail


F.M. Tholozan

Leon Bowen
Senior Manager (Electron Microscopy)


Fibroblast growth factors play a key role in regulating lens epithelial cell proliferation and differentiation via an anteroposterior gradient that exists between the aqueous and vitreous humours. FGF-2 is the most important for lens epithelial cell proliferation and differentiation. It has been proposed that the presentation of FGF-2 to the lens epithelial cells involves the lens capsule as a source of matrix-bound FGF-2. Here we used immunogold labelling to measure the matrix-bound FGF-2 gradient on the inner surface of the lens capsule in flat-mounted preparations to visualize the FGF-2 available to lens epithelial cells. We also correlated FGF-2 levels with levels of its matrix-binding partner perlecan, a heparan sulphate proteoglycan (HSPG) and found the levels of both to be highest at the lens equator. These also coincided with increased levels of phosphorylated extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1 and 2 (pERK1/2) in lens epithelial cells that localised to condensed chromosomes of epithelial cells that were Ki-67 positive. The gradient of matrix-bound FGF-2 (anterior pole: 3.7 ± 1.3 particles/μm2; equator: 8.2 ± 1.9 particles/μm2; posterior pole: 4 ± 0.9 particles/μm2) and perlecan (anterior pole: 2.1 ± 0.4 particles/μm2; equator: 5 ± 2 particles/μm2; posterior pole: 1.9 ± 0.7 particles/μm2) available at the inner lens capsule surface was measured for the bovine lens. These data support the anteroposterior gradient hypothesis and provide the first measurement of the gradient for an important morphogen and its HSPG partner, perlecan, at the epithelial cell-lens capsule interface.


Wu, W., Tholozan, F., Goldberg, M., Bowen, L., Wu, J., & Quinlan, R. (2014). A gradient of matrix-bound FGF-2 and perlecan is available to lens epithelial cells. Experimental Eye Research, 120, 10-14.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Nov 30, 2014
Publication Date Mar 1, 2014
Deposit Date May 1, 2014
Publicly Available Date May 6, 2014
Journal Experimental Eye Research
Print ISSN 0014-4835
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 120
Pages 10-14
Keywords Lens capsule, FGF-2, Perlecan, ERK1/2.


Published Journal Article (2.2 Mb)

Copyright Statement
This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-No Derivative Works License, which permits non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

You might also like

Downloadable Citations