Fawzia Bardag-Gorce, Ph.D.

Fawzia Bardag-Gorce, PhD

Investigator, The Lundquist Institute
Associate Researcher, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA


Corneal Epithelium Regeneration

Research Description

Dr. Fawzia Bardag-Gorce research focus is the field of eye research. Her goal is to regenerate the ocular surface of patients suffering from a defect in corneal epithelium renewal. The technology consists of using the patient own cells to treat specific organ failure. Dr. Bardag-Gorce has directed preclinical studies that demonstrated the efficacy of a rabbit Cultured Autologous Oral Mucosal Epithelial Cell Sheet (CAOMECS) to reconstruct the ocular surface. The following efforts focused on demonstrating CAOMECS safety as a treatment for the ocular surface. Bardag-Gorce's team is currently preparing the transition to clinical development to bring CAOMECS to the bedside. Building on her experience and expertise on the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway, Dr. Bardag-Gorce is also focusing on modulating the activity of the ubiquitin proteasome pathway in human corneal epithelial cells as it is a very promising treatment to further enhance corneal transparency after injury or cornea transplantation.


  • MS, 1994, Blaise Pascal University, France
  • PhD, 1999; Blaise Pascal University, France

Recent and/or Significant Publications

Fawzia Bardag-Gorce, et al. Proteasomes in corneal epithelial cells and cultured autologous oral mucosal epithelial cell sheet (CAOMECS) graft used for the ocular surface regeneration. The Ocular Surface. 2017 Oct;15(4):749-758. doi: 10.1016/j.jtos.2017.05.010. Epub 2017 May 18. PMID: 28528957
Fawzia Bardag-Gorce, et al. The Role of E-Cadherin in Maintaining the Barrier Function of Corneal Epithelium after Treatment with Cultured Autologous Oral Mucosa Epithelial Cell Sheet Grafts for Limbal Stem Deficiency. J Ophthalmol. 2016:4805986. Epub 2016 Sep 29. PMID: 27777792 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/joph/2016/4805986/
Joan Oliva, Fawzia Bardag-Gorce, Andrew Wood, Sota H, Yutaka Niihara. Direct labeling of 19F-perfluorocarbon onto engineered multilayered cell sheet for MRI-based non-invasive cell tracking. Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine. October 2015, Volume 12, Issue 5, pp 371-378. http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s13770-014-0092-x
Fawzia Bardag-Gorce, et al. Carrier-free cultured autologous oral mucosa epithelial cell sheet (CAOMECS) for corneal epithelium reconstruction: A histological study. The Ocular Surface. 13(2), 150–163. 2015. DOI: 10.1016/j.jtos.2014.12.003. PMID: 25881998
Fawzia Bardag-Gorce, et al. Microarray analysis of oral mucosal epithelial cell sheet. Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine. 2013;10(6):362-370.