The Pathology of Human Teratomas

  • Ivan Damjanov
Part of the Contemporary Biomedicine book series (CB, volume 3)


Teratomas are tumors composed of multiple tissues foreign to the anatomic site from which they originate (Willis, 1951). The term, coined from the Greek words teras meaning monster, and the suffix -oma (from onkoma—swelling) to denote its neoplastic nature, was introduced by Virchow (1863), and since then, it has been used to describe both benign and malignant tumors composed of haphazardly intermixed tissues originating from actually or potentially pluripotent stem cells. Teratomas are considered to be neoplasms because of their progressive, uncoordinated and unregulated growth. The teratoid, ie., monster-like appearance of these tumors, reflects abnormal development of tissues originating from the pluripotent stem cells. Since teratomas represent true neoplasms, most of them are unrelated to congenital malformations or abnormal embryonic development (Warkany, 1971).


Germ Cell Tumor Embryonal Carcinoma Testicular Tumor Embryonal Carcinoma Cell Ovarian Teratoma 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© The HUMANA Press Inc. 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ivan Damjanov
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PathologyHahnemann Medical College and HospitalPhiladelphiaUSA

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