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Virchows Arch. 1996 Oct;429(2-3):91-4.

Neoplastic human tissue mast cells express the adhesion molecule CD44/HCAM.

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Institut für Pathologie, Universität Tübingen, Germany.


Expression of the homing-associated cell adhesion molecule/HCAM (CD44) in normal/reactive and neoplastic human tissue mast cells (TMC) was determined immunohistochemically using the antibody DAKO-DF1485, which detects all isoforms of CD44. Studies were performed on 30 routinely processed specimens. Twenty of these, from bone marrow, skin, spleen, liver, lymph node and jejunal mucosa, contained infiltrates of TMC. These represented various types of generalized mastocytosis/systemic mast cell disease, including benign systemic mastocytosis. Ten specimens consisted of tissue with a marked reactive increase in TMC; most of these were lymph nodes with chronic nonspecific lymphadenitis and benign or malignant solid tumours. In all 30 specimens TMC exhibited an annular pattern of immunostaining, which was usually very strong. Both normal/reactive and neoplastic TMC exhibited consistent immunoreactivity with the antibody DAKO-DF1485, and this antibody may be of diagnostic value in the detection of atypical TMC associated with malignant mastocytosis. TMC and their neoplastic derivatives belong to a large family of mesenchymal and epithelial cells containing the principal surface receptor for hyaluronan.

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