A comparative quantitative analysis of laminin-5 in the basement membrane of normal, hyperplastic, and malignant oral mucosa by confocal immunofluorescence imaging.
Laminin-5 (Ln-5) is a heterotrimeric basement membrane (BM) molecule (alpha3beta3gamma2). It is a principal protein constituent of the anchoring filaments, which connect the BM with the hemidesmosomes of the basal keratinocytes and possess a crucial function in keratinocyte adhesion. Confocal immunofluorescence imaging is introduced for a quantitative evaluation of the Ln-5 content in the BM of oral squamous epithelium. The BM of normal oral mucosa was used as a reference (100%) for comparative analysis and showed a nearly uniform Ln-5 immunofluorescence intensity (99-100%). In all hyperplastic lesions of oral mucosa, the Ln-5 immunofluorescence intensity was increased (107-141%). The increased Ln-5 content in the BM of hyperplastic lesions suggests an increased keratinocyte-BM adhesion, possibly resulting in a higher stability of the oral mucosa. In contrast, in the oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) invasive front, the remaining BM segments were characterized by a decrease in Ln-5 immunofluorescence intensity (35-74%). A stronger decrease of Ln-5-linked kerationocyte-BM adhesion correlates with a higher tumor grade. Because in central areas of carcinoma BM segments with a normal Ln-5 content could be demonstrated, the fundamental Ln-5 diminution in BM segments of the invasive front should be considered as an invasion-associated phenomenon.
Haas, KM; Berndt, A; Stiller, KJ; Hyckel, P; Kosmehl, H
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