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Histochem J. 1987 Aug;19(8):438-48.

Localization of neuron-specific (gamma gamma) enolase in proliferating (supportive and neoplastic) Schwann cells. An immunohisto- and electron-immunocyto-chemical study of ganglioneuroblastoma and schwannomas.

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Department of Pathology, University of Virginia School of Medicine, Charlottesville 22908.


Neuron-specific (gamma gamma) enolase, a glycolytic enzyme used as a relatively specific marker for normal neurons and neuroendocrine cells, has recently been found in a variety of neoplastic cells and in reactive astrocytes. Its localization was investigated by immunohisto- and electron-immunocyto-chemistry, in the proliferating supportive Schwann cells of a peripheral ganglioneuroblastoma and in the neoplastic Schwann cells of four acoustic tumours. By light microscopy, the neoplastic Schwann cells showed moderate uneven diffuse immunopositivity for enolase. By electron-immunocytochemistry, both types of Schwann cells demonstrated immunopositivity discretely limited to their cell surface membranes. The neoplastic ganglion cells and axons of the ganglioneuroblastoma and the normal neurons and axons included in the schwannomas were, as expected, intensely immunopositive. The visualization of gamma gamma enolase on the cell surface membranes of both neoplastic and non-neoplastic proliferating Schwann cells suggests that increased glycolytic activity may occur on the surface of these proliferating cells irrespective of the nature of the proliferation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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