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Histochemistry. 1989;93(1):93-103.

Cell type heterogeneity of intermediate filament expression in epithelia of the human pituitary gland.

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Institute of Pathology, District Hospital Görlitz, German Democratic Republic.


In the present study we have localized immunohistochemically the intermediate filament proteins of the human pituitary gland (adenohypophysis, pars intermedia and pars tuberalis) by an indirect immunoperoxidase technique or by double immunofluorescence methods and analysed the individual cytokeratin polypeptides using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis. We found that the expression of cytokeratins in different epithelial cells of the human anterior pituitary gland was heterogeneous. Whereas the endocrine cells only expressed cytokeratins 8 and 18, the folliculo-stellate cells exhibited a reactivity for cytokeratins 7, 8, 18 and 19 as well as for GFAP and vimentin. The squamous epithelial cells of the pars tuberalis and the Ratke's cysts showed a more complex cytokeratin pattern of both squamous and simple type. Whereas in may cystic epithelial cells including the "pseudo-follicles" a triple expression of cytokeratin, vimentin and GFAP could be observed, only some basal cells of squamous epithelial nests coexpressed cytokeratin and vimentin. The differences in the intermediate filament protein distribution are discussed in the light of embryological relationships of the different parts of the human pituitary gland.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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