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Expression of non-mast cell histidine decarboxylase in tumor-associated microvessels in human esophageal squamous cell carcinomas

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Li Z, Liu J, Tang F, Liu Y, Waldum HL, Cui G. Expression of non-mast cell histidine decarboxylase in tumor-associated microvessels in human esophageal squamous cell carcinomas. APMIS 2008;116:1034–42.

Histamine is produced by mast cells and many other types of cells. The role of histamine released from mast cells in promoting tumor angiogenesis has been intensively studied; however, the role of non-mast cell histamine in regulating tumor angiogenesis has been largely ignored. In this study, tissue specimen sections from 43 patients with esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) and normal esophageal biopsies from 17 heath individuals obtained from a high incidence area of north China were used to assess changes in microvessel density (MVD) and non-mast cell L-histidine decarboxylase (HDC) (the only rate-limiting enzyme that catalyzes the formation of histamine from L-histidine) expression in the tumor microenvironment by immunohistochemistry (IHC). In addition, the cellular characterization of non-mast cell HDC-positive cells in microvessels was examined by double IHC combined with HDC/CD34 and HDC/PCNA antibodies. These IHC analyses revealed a significantly increased HDC-positive MVD in ESCC as compared with normal controls, which accounted for ∼61% of CD34-labeled general MVD in ESCC. Furthermore, IHC in serial sections and double IHC showed that most of these HDC-positive cells were CD34-positive endothelial cells in microvessels with an increased proliferative capacity. Thus, our results suggest that non-mast cell histamine expressed in endothelial cells of microvessels could be an additional cellular source and might play a role in regulating angiogenesis in ESCC.
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Keywords: Esophagus; angiogenesis; histamine; squamous cell carcinoma

Document Type: Original Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Medicine, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou University 2: Department of Pathology, The Fourth Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou University, Zhengzhou, Henan, China 3: Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, St. Olavs Hospital, Trondheim University Hospital, Trondheim

Publication date: 2008-12-01

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