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August 13, 1982

Ultrastructural Appearances of Tumours: A Diagnostic Atlas

JAMA. 1982;248(6):757. doi:10.1001/jama.1982.03330060081043

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This book is written for the surgical pathologist. It succinctly outlines in picture and text how ultrastructural study of a tumor may help in those circumstances where light microscopy alone does not permit its classification. The authors rigorously confine their treatment of the subject to this aim and have contributed an excellent addition to the pathologist's library.

The first 50 or so pages are taken up with a review of the ultrastructural features that might be found in any neoplasm. As the authors clearly indicate, neoplastic cells may show no significant ultrastructural changes from normal cells, and this point is well emphasized in those 50-odd pages. They make their position known in words that deserve quotation: "The criteria for the detection of neoplastic disease and the determination of malignant behaviour are still best assessed by light microscopy. Electron microscopy has little to add to this initial phase of evaluation."