Ultrastructure of the human palatine tonsil and its functional significance

Vol. 56 No. 2 Suppl., 2015
This supplement was not sponsored by Outside Organizations.


Marko Jovic, Verica Avramovic, Predrag Vlahovic, Vojin Savic, Aleksandra Velickov, Vladimir Petrovic

The human palatine tonsils represent a mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue with a significant function in mucosal protection against alimentary and airborne pathogens. The ultrastructure of different morphological compartments in the human palatine tonsil was studied in eighteen tonsils obtained from the patients who had undergone elective tonsillectomy due to chronic tonsillitis. The tonsillar specimens were analyzed by scanning and transmission electron microscopy. The results showed the presence of tight junctions between superficial epithelial cells of the oropharyngeal tonsillar surface. The crypt epithelium is a sponge-like structure infiltrated by non-epithelial cells, mostly lymphocytes, and is characterized by the presence of small pores - microcrypts occupied by large microvillus cells and/or lymphocytes. Antigen-presenting Langerhans cells with typical intracytoplasmic Birbeck granules were also found in the crypt epithelium. The lymphoid follicles are composed of lymphocytes and two types of non-lymphoid follicular cells: small fibroblast-like cells and large cells, morphologically consistent with antigen-bearing follicular dendritic cells or macrophages. The interfollicular areas consisted of a dense network of reticular cells and reticular fibers; many lymphocytes were interspersed between the reticular fibers. In addition to arterioles and high endothelial venules in the interfollicular lymphoid tissue, some fenestrated capillaries were seen intraepithelially and subepithelially. The complex ultrastructure of the human palatine tonsil provides a microenvironment necessary for antigen uptake, antigen processing and immune response.

Corresponding author: Marko Jovic; e-mail: marko.jovic@medfak.ni.ac.rs

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Maria Dobre, Daniela Elena Dinu, Eugenia Panaitescu, Rodica Daniela Birla, Cristina-Ileana Iosif, Marius Boeriu, Silviu Constantinoiu, Roxana Nicoleta Ivan, Carmen Maria Ardeleanu, Marieta Costache

The colorectal cancer (CRC) modern therapy is using adjuvant and neoadjuvant companion therapeutic agents, part of them having an anti-angiogenic action. Their benefic effect can be annulated by some gene mutations, which are interfering in signal transduction pathways. One of the more frequent activating mutations is occurring in the KRAS gene. We assessed the KRAS mutations by two molecular methods, in a group of patients with a follow-up until 144 months, aiming to establish eventual correlations between the presence of mutations and the evolution of patients. We tried to appreciate the prognostic value of these mutations. A retrospective study was conducted on 74 patients treated by radical surgery; the surgical specimens were analyzed macroscopically and the histopathological type and degree were established. PCR-RFLP (polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism) and pyrosequencing were performed on paraffin-embedded tumor specimens. Statistical analysis showed significant differences in survival between patients with wild type gene and patients with mutation in codon 13; the same results were also obtained regarding TNM I, II stages or Dukes type A and B cases. However, for the patients in stage IV pTNM, the evolution was slightly better in association with a KRAS mutation than in wild type cases.

Corresponding author: Carmen Maria Ardeleanu, MD, PhD; e-mail: cmardeleanu@yahoo.com

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