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November 1991

Kaposi's Sarcoma: Further Immunohistologic Evidence of a Vascular Endothelial Origin

Author Affiliations

Lily Planus; Department of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery University of Miami School of Medicine Miami, FL 33101

Arch Dermatol. 1991;127(11):1734-1735. doi:10.1001/archderm.1991.01680100138030

To the Editor.—  Immunohistologic examination has permitted identification of many antigens that are present in Kaposi's sarcoma (KS) cells.1 Yet, an exact nosologic definition of the KS cell does not exist. While it is clear that KS is derived from endothelium, it is not resolved whether blood vessel or lymphatic endothelium is the parent cell type.The CD34 antigen is a 110-kd glycoprotein of unknown function, the gene for which is found on chromosome 1. Under normal circumstances, the antigen is expressed by blood vessel endothelial cells, hematopoietic progenitor cells, and parafollicular mesenchymal cells in fetal skin.2 On endothelial cells, it is expressed on luminal membranes.3 When found in proliferations of phenotypically immature endothelial cells, such as fetal tissue at 10 weeks and adult angioblastoma cells, however, the antigen is localized to endothelial abluminal microprocesses, especially at tips of vascular sprouts and on fully formed microvessels.3

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