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Brain Tumor Pathol. 1997;14(1):27-33.

Expression and role of cadherins in astrocytic tumors.

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  • 1Department of Neurosurgery, Hirosaki University, School of Medicine, Aomori, Japan.


Cadherins are Ca(2+)-dependent cell adhesion molecules that play an important role in tissue formation and morphogenesis in multicellular organisms. In recent years, there have been reports of cadherin involvement in tumor invasion and metastasis. Twenty-two surgical specimens and some cultured cells were studied by immunohistochemical staining. No significant difference was observed in the patients with anaplastic astrocytoma, whereas decreased expression of N-cadherin was detected at the time of recurrence in those with glioblastoma. In these groups, cerebrospinal fluid dissemination was found, and contralateral cerebral metastases and extracranial metastases were observed. We conclude that decreased N-cadherin expression at the immunohistochemically demonstrated time of recurrence correlates with tumor invasion and dissemination of cerebrospinal fluid.

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