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Collagen deposition correlates with loss of E-cadherin and increased p63 expression in dysplastic conditions of oral submucous fibrosis


This paper focuses on the status of epithelial markers, E-cadherin, and p63 in the backdrop of an abnormal amount of collagen in the sub-mucosa of dysplastic and non-dysplastic grades of OSF. Histologically confirmed OSF and normal oral mucosa samples were procured. Samples were stained by Van Gieson’s stain (VG) and immunohistochemistry. The captured images were analyzed by ImageJ software to quantify their grayscale intensities. There was a gradual increase in the intensity of VG stain from normal to non-dysplastic and dysplastic OSF and the differences in their mean grayscale values were found to be significant (p < 0.00001). The intensity of E-cadherin was found to be the highest in non-dysplastic conditions and lowest in dysplastic conditions. The intensity difference of E-cadherin between normal and non-dysplastic OSF was found to be significant (p < 0.00001). The grayscale scale intensity values for p63 in whole epithelium depicted significant differences between normal and diseased conditions but for its intensity, in basal cells, significant differences were found between non-dysplastic and other classes of tissues. There was a positive correlation observed between VG and p63 staining intensity. The diseased oral epithelium demonstrated greater deposition of sub-epithelial collagen fibers along with subsequent loss of E-cadherin and an increased p63 expression.

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The authors would like to thank Guru Nanak Institute of Dental Science and Research, Kolkata; School of Medical Science and Technology, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur and Centre for Biomaterial, Cellular and Molecular Theranostics, Vellore Institute of Technology, Vellore for providing support to carry out the research. We especially thank Vellore Institute of Technology (VIT), Vellore for providing institutional internal research funding (seed 2578).


No external funding was received for this work.

Author information




SC: data acquisition, data analysis and interpretation, statistical analysis, manuscript preparation, and editing. RRP: study concept and study design. MP: study concept and study design. JC: study concept and study design. RKD: data acquisition, manuscript review and editing, study design, and study concept.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Raunak Kumar Das.

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Samples were collected under informed consent of patients and ethical clearance from GNIDSR (GNIDSR/IEC/07/16).

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Chakraborti, S., Paul, R.R., Pal, M. et al. Collagen deposition correlates with loss of E-cadherin and increased p63 expression in dysplastic conditions of oral submucous fibrosis. Med Mol Morphol (2021).

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  • Oral submucous fibrosis
  • Trismus
  • Dysplasia
  • Collagen
  • E-cadherin
  • p63