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Exp Cell Res. 1986 Jan;162(1):97-113.

Cell type heterogeneity of cytokeratin expression in complex epithelia and carcinomas as demonstrated by monoclonal antibodies specific for cytokeratins nos. 4 and 13.


Three monoclonal antibodies, 1C7, 2D7 and 6B10, directed against cytokeratins of human esophagus were isolated and characterized by one- and two-dimensional gel electrophoresis and by immunohistochemical staining on sections of human epithelial tissues. In immunoblot experiments, antibodies of clones 1C7 (IgG2a) and 2D7 (IgG2b) react only with cytokeratin no. 13 of the acidic (type I) subfamily of cytokeratin polypeptides (Mr 54000; pI 5.1); antibodies of clone 6B10 (IgG1) detect only cytokeratin no. 4 (Mr 59000; pI 7.3) of the basic (type II) cytokeratin subfamily and allows the detection of this protein and possible degradation products at high sensitivity. In immunohistochemical staining all three antibodies stain non-cornifying squamous epithelium (e.g., tongue, esophagus, anus) and transitional epithelium of the bladder. Antibodies of clone 6B10 also stain cells in certain ciliated pseudostratified epithelia and ductal epithelia of various exocrine glands. These monoclonal antibodies are the first examples of antibodies specific for individual cytokeratin polypeptides characteristic of certain complex epithelia. They allow the identification of distinct minor populations of cells present in certain complex and glandular epithelia and in tumors derived therefrom which hitherto have not been distinguished. The possible reasons for the occurrence of cell type heterogeneity of cytokeratin expression in complex epithelia and in some carcinomas are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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