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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 78  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 698--708

Practical immunohistochemistry of epithelial skin tumor

Department of Pathology, College of Medicine, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Ahmed Alhumaidi
Department of Pathology (32), College of Medicine, King Saud University P.O. Box 2925, Riyadh 11461
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0378-6323.102359

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Skin tumors are tumors arising from keratinocyte and from adnexal structures. Immunohistochemistry is very helpful in diagnosis of difficult cases in epithelial skin neoplasms, especially basal cell carcinoma (BCC) which is positive for BerEP4, a keratin marker, and mostly negative for epithelial membrane antigen (EMA). Squamous cell carcinoma cells are positive for EMA and cytokeratin, which are of higher molecular weight than those found in BCC. In contrast to BCC, trichoblastoma and trichoepithelioma are negative for androgen receptors. Of the malignant dermal spindle cell lesions, spindle cell squamous carcinoma is positive to 34 betaE12, desmoplasmic melanoma is positive to S100, and leiomyosarcoma is positive to desmin. Of the malignant pagetoid cells, Paget's disease is positive to CK7 and cam5.2, whereas the pagetoid variant of Bowen's disease is positive to CK 5/6. Melanoma in-situ is positive to both S100 and melan-A. Immunohistochemistry is an extremely valuable adjunct to standard morphologic diagnosis in diagnostic pathology. Diagnosis of epithelial tumor depends largely on morphological features but, in rare cases, immunohistochemical stains are needed for definitive diagnosis.


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Online since 15th March '04
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