Vascularization of human cerebral gliomas: a lectin-cytochemical and morphometric study

  • Rüdiger J. Seitz
  • Wolfgang Wechsler


Tumour vascularization of 56 human cerebral gliomas was studied by morphometric analysis of paraffin sections that were stained with biotinylated ulex europaeus type I lectin (UEA I). UEA I has recently been established as a sensitive cytochemical marker for vascular endothelial cells in normal and neoplastic brain tissue. Since in this morphometric study it was demonstrated that UEA I is particularly effective in demonstrating capillaries rather than polyvalent antibodies against factor VIII related antigen (FVIII/ RAG), UEA I cytochemistry was selected to quantify the differences in vascularization among human gliomas.

Morphometric measurements of small tumour vessels and capillaries within a range of 5 to 180μm in diameter revealed significant statistical differences with respect to counts per standard area and mean vascular diameters. Grade II astrocytomas rendered the lowest values for vascular density, while oligo-dendrogliomas of grade II exhibited the highest values exceeding even those of anaplastic astrocytomas (grade III) and of glioblastomas (grade IV). On the contrary, oligodendrogliomas (grade II and III) revealed the lowest mean vascular diameters, while glioblastomas exhibited a most heterogenous vascularization with markedly increased mean vascular diameters. In mixed gliomas (grade II and III) the patterns of vasculariza- tion varied regionally according to those of the corresponding glioma types.

It is concluded that proliferation of blood vessels and capillaries in human cerebral gliomas is not only related to the grade of malignancy but also influenced by the glioma cell type.


human cerebral gliomas tumour vascularization ulex europaeus type I lectin morphometric analysis 


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© Martinas Nijhoff Publishers, Boston 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rüdiger J. Seitz
  • Wolfgang Wechsler

There are no affiliations available

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