Focus on limbal stem cell deficiency and limbal cell transplantation
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World J Transplant. 2023 Dec 18;13(6):321-330. doi: 10.5500/wjt.v13.i6.321. PMID: 38174150; PMCID: PMC10758683.

Focus on limbal stem cell deficiency and limbal cell transplantation

Authors: Emanuele Tonti 1Gregorio Antonio Manco 1Leopodo Spadea 1Marco Zeppieri 2


  1. Eye Clinic, Policlinico Umberto I, “Sapienza” University of Rome, Rome 00142, Italy.
  2. Department of Ophthalmology, University Hospital of Udine, Udine 33100, Italy.


Limbal stem cell deficiency (LSCD) causes severe vision impairment and can lead to blindness, representing one of the most challenging ocular surface disorders. Stem cell deficiency can be congenital or, more often, acquired. The categorization of ocular surface transplantation techniques is crucial to achieving treatment homogeneity and quality of care, according to the anatomic source of the tissue being transplanted, genetic source, autologous or allogenic transplantation (to reflect histocompatibility in the latter group), and cell culture and tissue engi neering techniques. The aim of this minireview is to provide a summary of the management of LSCD, from clinical characteristics and therapeutic outcomes to the development of novel therapeutic approaches. The manuscript also briefly summarizes recent findings in the current literature and outlines the future challenges to overcome in the management of the major types of ocular surface failure.

Keywords: Conjunctival limbal allograft; Conjunctival limbal autograft; Cultivated limbal epithelial transplantation; Keratolimbal allograft; Limbal stem cell deficiency; Simple limbal epithelial transplantation.