Proliferative Activity and Aneuploidy in Pleomorphic Adenomas of the Salivary Glands

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We used flow cytometry in a retrospective study of pleomorphic adenoma and carcinoma arising in pleomorphic adenoma, using paraffin-embedded tissue, to assess the relationship among proliferative activity, ploidy, and recurrence or malignant transformation. Twenty-four specimens obtained from 22 tumors were acceptable for analysis (co-efficient of variation, < or = 7.0), including multiple samples from two tumors. Fourteen tumors (13 benign and one malignant) were diploid. Six tumors were aneuploid: four benign pleomorphic adenomas and two carcinomas arising in pleomorphic adenoma. Two tetraploid tumors were malignant recurrences from the same patient. Of the recurrent tumors (nine benign and four malignant), 54% were aneuploid. The highest S-phase fractions were observed in recurrent and malignant pleomorphic adenomas. Immunostaining with p105, a nuclear proliferation antigen, revealed increased proliferative activity in a majority of pleomorphic adenomas. Increased proliferative activity and aneuploidy occurred in benign pleomorphic adenomas.

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