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J Pathol. 1991 Sep;165(1):75-80.

Immunocytochemical characterization of large granular lymphocytes in normal cervix and HPV associated disease.

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Histopathology Department, Addenbrookes Hospital, Cambridge, U.K.


A quantitative immunocytochemical study of large granular lymphocytes (LGLs) in the normal cervix and in human papillomavirus (HPV) associated disease was performed using a panel of monoclonal antibodies which included those for LGL surface markers CD56, CD16, and CD57. Only CD56-positive cells were found within the ectocervical epithelium and these cells increased in number in cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN) in comparison with normal cervix. Examination of serial sections and double labelling suggests that these cells are CD3+, CD8+, CD56+, CD16+. The observed increase in number of this subset was not associated specifically with HPV infection but was related to CIN. Lymphocytes expressing all three LGL markers were found in the stroma and CD16(+)-positive cells clustered around endocervical glands with occasional cells extending into the endocervical epithelium. These results indicate that a small subset of LGLs which express T-cell markers is increased in number in CIN. Cells expressing classical NK markers are restricted to the stroma and are not found within the ectocervical epithelium.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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