Identification of Paneth cells in pyloric glands associated with gastric and intestinal mixed-type intestinal metaplasia of the human stomach
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We have proposed that intestinal metaplasia (IM) of the human stomach be divided into two types on the basis of cell differentiation status: a gastric and intestinal (GI) mixed type and a solely intestinal (I) type. In the GI mixed type, gastric (foveolar epithelial and pyloric gland cells) and intestinal (goblet, intestinal absorptive, and Paneth cells) phenotype cells coexist in the same intestinalized gastric glands in various combinations and degrees. Consequently, intestinalized gastric glands are hybrids. Although we have described the rare appearance of Paneth-like cells in pyloric glands of GI mixed-type IM, the absence of an appropriate Paneth cell marker leaves room for doubt as to their true character. The purpose of this study was to clearly identify Paneth cells in pyloric glands in IM lesions using a new Paneth cell marker, a polyclonal antibody human defensin (HD)-5, raised against HD-5, which is included in granules of Paneth cells. A total of 105 gastric samples (4 biopsy and 101 surgical resected specimens) were examined. In only nine cases (8.6%), the antibody allowed demonstration of Paneth cells in pyloric glands in GI mixed-type IM, confirming our previous finding. Analysis of the proliferative cell (P) zone indicated that a common stem cell might generate both GI phenotype cells by upward and downward migration. No Paneth cells were found above the P zone. The results suggest that the stem cells show abnormal cell differentiation in IM lesions but preserve their normal direction of migration.
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