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Cellular schwannomas of the intracranial and intraspinal compartment: morphological and immunological characteristics compared with classical benign schwannomas.
Journal of Neuropathology and Experimental Neurology
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The concept of cellular schwannoma as an unusual benign tumor is well established for peripheral nerves but has never been tested in neurosurgical series. In order to test the validity of this concept in cranial nerves and spinal roots we performed an analysis of the clinical and morphological characteristics of 12 cellular and 166 classical benign schwannomas. Immunohistochemical detection of antigen expression in Schwann cells including proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) was also performed. This study shows that cellular schwannomas in neurosurgical series manifest at a lower age than the classical benign variant and occur mainly in the spinal roots. Mitotic activity and sinusoidal vessels appear more frequently in cellular schwannomas and constitute with high cellularity, the most valuable criteria separating both entities. The postoperative course in both types of tumors was free of metastases or sarcomatous changes. Immunoexpression of S-100 protein, vimentin, epithelial membrane antigen and glial fibrillary acidic protein is not statistically different between the two variants. In contrast, PCNA is more highly expressed in cellular schwannomas. These These results confirm the concept that cellular schwannomas are a clinico-pathological variant of benign schwannomas and provide significant support for the introduction of this entity in neurosurgical oncology.
Adult, Antigens, Neoplasm/analysis, Brain Neoplasms/pathology, Female, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Neurilemmoma/pathology, Nuclear Proteins/analysis, Proliferating Cell Nuclear Antigen, Retrospective Studies, Spinal Cord Neoplasms/pathology
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