Measuring the effects of postmortem time and age on mouse lens elasticity using atomic force microscopy

Wyndham More Batchelor, Bianca Maceo Heilman, Esdras Arrieta-Quintero, Marco Ruggeri, Jean Marie Parel, Fabrice Manns, Sara Cabrera-Ghayouri, Mohammed Dibas, Noel Marysa Ziebarth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The mouse lens is frequently used both in vivo and ex vivo in ophthalmic research to model conditions affecting the human lens, such as presbyopia. The mouse lens has a delicate structure which is prone to damage and biomechanical changes both before and after extraction from the whole globe. When not properly controlled for, these changes can confound the biomechanical analysis of mouse lenses. In this study, atomic force microscopy microindentation was used to assess changes in the Young's Modulus of Elasticity of the mouse lens as a function of mouse age and postmortem time. Old mouse lenses measured immediately postmortem were significantly stiffer than young mouse lenses (p = 0.028). However, after 18 h of incubation, there was no measurable difference in lens stiffness between old and young mouse lenses (p = 0.997). This demonstrates the need for careful experimental control in experiments using the mouse lens, especially regarding postmortem time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number108768
JournalExperimental Eye Research
StatePublished - Nov 2021


  • Age
  • Atomic force microscopy
  • Biomechanics
  • Incubation time
  • Lens
  • Postmortem time
  • Presbyopia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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