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Langerhans cells in the development of skin cancer: A qualitative and quantitative comparison of cell markers in normal, acanthotic and neoplastic ovine skin

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Townsend, W.L., Gorrell, M.D. and Mayer, R. (1997) Langerhans cells in the development of skin cancer: A qualitative and quantitative comparison of cell markers in normal, acanthotic and neoplastic ovine skin. Pathology, 29 (1). pp. 42-50. ISSN 0031-3025

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Article Link: https://doi.org/10.1080/00313029700169524


The distribution of Langerhans cells in normal, acanthotic and neoplastic ovine epithelium was examined using the enzyme marker Acetylcholinesterase (AchE) and monoclonal antibodies (MoAb) to CD1 (20.27) and MHC Class It (49.1 and 28.1) molecules.

In normal skin, where Langerhans cells were regularly spaced within the basal layer, qualitative observations and direct pairwise testing showed that AChE was superior to the MoAb in detecting these cells. Significantly more (P < 0.01) dendritic cells were also detected with MoAb 49.1 than MoAb 20.27 or 28.1, suggesting differential expression of MHC Class II subsets and the presence of CD1– MHC Class II+ granule– dendritic cells in sheep analogous to indeterminate cells of man.

In acanthotic skin, compared to normal skin, Langerhans cells were less numerous, irregular and more suprabasal in distribution and their morphology was occasionally swollen and indistinct. No difference was seen in the ability of AChE and MoAb in detecting Langerhans cells, however pairwise testing of markers did demonstrate that significantly more (P < 0.05) cells without dendritic processes were stained with MoAb 49.1 than with 20.27 or 28.1.

In all squamous cell carcinomas examined dendritic cells that stained for ACHE, CD1 or MHC Class II antigens were concentrated at the peripheral areas of neoplastic epithelium. Many dendritic cells were detected with MoAb to MHC Class II antigens, whereas CD1 and AChE positive dendritic cells were rare in tumor bearing tissue.

The quantitative differences in the immunohistochemical staining of Langerhans cells between normal, acanthotic and neoplastic epithelium were consistent with ultrastructural studies. When compared with those of a newborn lamb, which had had very little exposure to antigens or ultraviolet radiation (UVR), the Langerhans cells of the aged sheep were deformed and contained far fewer Birbeck granules. The abnormalities were progressively more severe in acanthotic and neoplastic skin. These observed changes may have resulted from UVR induced damage and may be indicative of impaired function involved in the development of skin cancer.

Item Type:Article
Subjects:Science > Biology > Cytology
Veterinary medicine > Veterinary epidemiology. Epizootiology
Veterinary medicine > Diseases of special classes of animals > Sheep and goats
Live Archive:28 Mar 2024 04:31
Last Modified:28 Mar 2024 04:31

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