Products of cells cultured from gliomas. VI. Immunofluorescent, morphometric, and ultrastructural characterization of two different cell types growing from explants of human gliomas

P. E. McKeever, B. H. Smith, J. A. Taren, R. L. Wahl, P. L. Kornblith, B. M. Chronwall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations

Abstract

Explants derived from human gliomas have been characterized with respect to their cellular outgrowth pattern after 1-22 weeks in culture. A mat of cells which were fibronectin (FN)-positive and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP)-negative (hereafter designated FN+ cells) with a polygonal, flat morphology covered the growth substrate in a swirling pattern for a mean diameter of 9.2 mm around FN+ explants. FN+ cells showed ruffled plasmalemma, dilated rough endoplasmic reticulin (RER), and extracellular filamentous strands. Rare desmosomes were compatible with at most minor leptomeningeal components or differentiation. FN+ cells predominated in six of seven cultures at passage 2, and their features were the same from various high-grade gliomas and gliosarcoma. Around other explants, elongated or stellate cells which were GFAP+ and FN- grew in a netlike pattern with little cell-to-cell contact. These GFAP+ cells surrounded explants at a mean diameter of 2 mm, substantially less than FN+ cells (P<0.005), and they grew more slowly than FN+ cells around explants. GFAP+ cells had an area/perimeter ratio which was less than that of FN+ cells. GFAP+ cells contained abundant intracellular filaments, rare desmosomes, and narrow RER cisternae. In mixed explants, GFAP+ cells often grew on top of FN+ cells. Individual cells which stained for both GFAP and FN were evident only from one glioma (8% doubly positive). Cells negative for both proteins resembled FN+ cells morphologically. Frozen sections of original glioma tissue showed FN+ vessel walls and GFAP+ parenchyma. Results are evidence for very early overgrowth of a preexistent FN+ cell type distinct from the GFAP+ parenchymal cell. The features of this distinct cell type are mesenchymal and resemble the proliferating vascular elements of gliomas in situ. The tendency for GFAP+ cells to grow on top of these FN+ cells suggests a feeder layer interaction. More knowledge of the origins and interactions of these two cell types may increase our understanding of the mechanism of antigenic changes in gliomas and may provide clues to improved therapeutic approaches.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)358-372
Number of pages15
JournalAmerican Journal of Pathology
Volume127
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 11 1987

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