Background: The integrity of the immune system is necessary to control tumor progression and a compromised state contributes to tumor escape. Aims: The study intends to evaluate the presence and distribution pattern of Langerhans cells (LC) in Oral epithelial dysplasia (OED) and oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) oral epithelial dysplasia and oral squamous cell carcinoma and elucidate their role. The study analyses LC in histological zones of the epithelium and connective tissue, which has seldom been attempted previously. Materials and Methods: Forty-five microscopic sections (i.e. 5 normal, 15 OED and 25 OSCC) were examined for expression of LC marker CD1a using immunohistochemistry. LCs were counted in zones of epithelium and connective tissue. Statistical Analysis Used: Results were analyzed using SPSS Version 16.0 and subjected to one-way ANOVA comparison and Student′s t-test and Wilcoxon Z test. Results: Significant decline in LC count was observed with progressing grade of OED and OSCC. The basal and suprabasal zones in OED and superficial zone in OSCC exhibited the highest density of LCs. The low LC count in severe dysplasia was attributed to paucity in the basal zone. There was a significant paucity of LCs in the sub-epithelial zone of all the grades of OSCC, with high influx of LCs within the tumor stroma. Also, poorly differentiated OSCC exhibited a significant decrease in the LC count within the overlying epitheilium as well as the tumor stroma. Conclusion: The present study suggests that there is a recruitment of LCs in the neoplastic process. Changes observed in LC distribution within the zones of dysplastic epithelium and tumor stroma can be interpreted as their pathophysiologic function.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging