Growth and transparency in the lens, an epithelial tissue, stimulated by pulses of PDGF

Science  04 Nov 1988:
Vol. 242, Issue 4879, pp. 777-779
DOI: 10.1126/science.3187521


The rat lens undergoes dramatic growth during early postnatal development. Lens weight increased by a factor of 23 in 26 days. Growth rate per day oscillated between 0 and 87 percent. A new culture system was designed to study the oscillations in growth during development. Lens growth and transparency in vitro required pulsatile delivery of platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) in HL-1 serum-free medium. Continuous delivery of HL-1 medium with PDGF or pulsatile delivery of HL-1 medium without PDGF resulted in lens opacity and no growth. These results provide direct evidence that PDGF stimulates an epithelial tissue and that oscillations in growth occur during normal development of the rat lens.