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May 25, 1963


JAMA. 1963;184(8):653. doi:10.1001/jama.1963.03700210087017

Familiar to pathologists is a not uncommon tumor, the so-called granular cell myoblastoma which, although rarely of great clinical significance, raises some vexing theoretical questions. Perhaps because we take such great pride in modern science, we find it disconcerting not to know whence arise the peculiar cells constituting this tumor. The cells, originally thought to be derivatives of striated muscle, have widely diverse locations, rendering this interpretation rather questionable. Fibroblasts, endoneural and perineural cells, and smooth muscle also have been suggested as the source. Investigations with histochemical techniques and tissue culture have not been conclusive.

Recent studies by Hausman1 add new data. In a small number of vermiform appendices peculiar granular cells, comparable to those found in the myoblastoma, were identified in the smooth muscle layers. Similar cells have been found in the bronchus and the bladder. The questions arise whether these represent normal or abnormal constituents and whether