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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Ultrastructural identification of protein bodies, cellular markers of human catecholamine neurons, in a temporal lobe ganglioglioma.

A temporal lobe ganglioglioma, surgically removed from an 8-year-old body, and a human brainstem at the level of locus coeruleus (LC) were processed for light microscopy (LM), with formalin fixation and paraffin embedding, and for electron microscopy (EM) with glutaraldehyde fixation, potassium permanganate postfixation, phosphotungstic acid-hematoxylin block-staining, and epoxy resin embedding. The paraffin sections were stained with toluidine blue O/rhodamine B and observed under epi-fluorescence. The thin sections for EM were viewed directly without further staining. The neuronal neoplastic cells of ganglioglioma and the neurons of LC are known to produce catecholamines. Both also contain spherical protein bodies (pb), cellular markers that identify catecholamine neurons in humans. The ultrastructural characteristics of the pb in LC were compared with those of the pb in neoplastic ganglion cells. These bodies had an identical ultrastructure, in both tissues, consisting of electron-lucent core surrounded by an electron-dense thin rim. The rhodamine B-stained sections also emphasized the identical morphology of the pb in ganglioglioma and LC. Based on the EM comparison, these brightly fluorescing spherical bodies are ideal markers for identifying in LM, the clusters of large neoplastic cells, representing neurons, which are the most important clue to the correct diagnosis of gangliogliomas.[1]


  1. Ultrastructural identification of protein bodies, cellular markers of human catecholamine neurons, in a temporal lobe ganglioglioma. Issidorides, M.R., Havaki, S., Chrysanthou-Piterou, M., Arvanitis, D.L. Ultrastructural pathology. (2000) [Pubmed]
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