Mast Cells and Blood Vessels Profile in Oral Carcinogenesis: An Immunohistochemistry Study

Document Type : Research Articles


1 Department of Dental Clinic, Division of Oral Pathology, Faculty of Pharmacy, Dentistry and Nursing, Federal University of Ceará, Fortaleza, Brazil.

2 Oral Rehabilitation and Preventive Department, Dental School, Federal University of Goias, Goiana, Brazil.

3 Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, Federal University of Ceará, Fortaleza, Brazil.


Background: The objectives of the present study were to evaluate angiogenesis and mast cell density in oral epithelial dysplasia and oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC). Materials and Methods: This was an observational, retrospective and quantitative study. The samples consisted of 60 tissue specimens from patients with squamous cell carcinoma, epithelial dysplasia and controls (n=20/group). Immunohistochemistry was performed using an anti-tryptase antibody to mast cells and anti-CD31 and anti-CD34 for blood vessels and we count the number of mast cells and determine the percentage of CD31 and CD34 antibody staining (vascular density). Results: The mast cells had lower density in OSCC compared to control and dysplasia (p = 0.009). In angiogenesis, the expression of CD31 showed a higher percentage of blood vessels in OSCC (p < 0.001), however, CD34 showed no difference between groups (p=0.092). The CD31 antibody presented as a high immunostaining in oral mucosa than CD34. Conclusions: The increased vascularity in squamous cell carcinoma suggests that angiogenesis begins when malignant transformation starts that seems to be inversely associated with the number of mast cells.


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