In a former report1 by one of us (Kirby), the object of our original investigation was stated to be a study of the nature of the cause of senile cataract and the possibility of its prevention or arrest by nonsurgical means. Various considerations showed that it was unwise to conduct such a research from the clinical side alone, as the same difficulties which have confronted other observers still remain unsolved from a scientific standpoint.
It was thought that much might be gained from a combination of clinical and fundamental laboratory studies. Attempts were to be made to study the living lens cells and to cultivate them outside the body. It was thought that living lens cells would form a suitable basis for research into the nature of the growth, nutrition and death of lens cells, after the differences which would exist in vivo and in vitro were discounted.
KIRBY DB, TABOR F, ESTEY K. CULTIVATION OF LENS EPITHELIUM IN VITROA FURTHER STUDY. Arch Ophthalmol. 1929;1(3):358–365. doi:10.1001/archopht.1929.00810010374008