Expression of E-cadherin and α-catenin in epithelial odontogenic tumors: An immunohistochemical study

Hiroyuki Kumamoto, Kiyoshi Ooya

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25 Citations (Scopus)


To clarify the possible role of cell adhesion in epithelial odontogenic tumors, expression of E-cadherin and α-catenin was examined by an immunohistochemical method. These molecules showed pericellular distribution in epithelial cells of the tooth germ and its derived tumors. In ameloblastomas, E-cadherin and α-catenin were expressed strongly in central polyhedral cells and slightly in peripheral columnar cells. These features resembled those of epithelial components in the tooth germ tissues, retaining cytodifferentiation of odontogenic epithelium. Expression of the molecules in the variants of ameloblastomas showed loss in the keratinizing areas and reduction in the granular cell clusters, suggesting terminal differentiation of the tumor cells. Calcifying epithelial odontogenic tumors and a clear cell odontogenic tumor preserved E-cadherin and α-catenin expression without a specific feature for histogenesis or cytodifferentiation. One case of two malignant ameloblastomas showed prominent reduction in expression of E-cadherin and α-catenin.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)152-157
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Oral Pathology and Medicine
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1999 Apr 1


  • E-cadherin
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Odontogenic tumor
  • α-catenin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Oral Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Cancer Research
  • Periodontics


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