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Ultrastruct Pathol. 1984;7(2-3):133-41.

Differentiation of normal and malignant human squamous epithelium in vivo and in vitro: a morphologic study.


We report a light microscopic and ultrastructural analysis of the comparative degrees of differentiation seen in keratinocytes derived from the tongue and epidermis with those of a well-differentiated human squamous carcinoma cell line (LICR-LON-HN5). When growing on plastic substrates, all cultures had a similar morphology, with multilayering and the production of cornified envelopes. When cultured on collagen gels the structure was more organized, with keratohyalin granules and keratin whorl formation in both the normal and the malignant cultures. Normal keratinocytes injected into athymic mice produced epidermal cysts, while cells from the cell line produced well-differentiated squamous cell carcinomas, which were partially solid and partially cystic. the tumor was well organized, with identifiable basal cells, spinous cells, keratohyalin granules, and a prominent basal lamina at the stromal/epithelial interface. This model is to be developed for comparative studies between normal and malignant cells, with particular reference to basement membrane production and to investigations of the relative importance of extrinsic and intrinsic factors in the control of squamous differentiation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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