C-kit expression, angiogenesis, and grading in canine mast cell tumour: A unique model to study C-kit driven human malignancies

Rosa Patruno, Ilaria Marech, Nicola Zizzo, Michele Ammendola, Patrizia Nardulli, Claudia Gadaleta, Marcello Introna, Gennaro Capriuolo, Rosa Angela Rubini, Domenico Ribatti, Cosmo Damiano Gadaleta, Girolamo Ranieri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Canine cutaneous mast cell tumour (CMCT) is a c-Kit driven tumour sharing similar c-Kit aberrations found in human gastrointestinal stromal tumour. CMCT is classified into three forms: well- (G1), intermediately (G2) (more benign diseases), and poorly (G3) differentiated (malignant) forms. We assess a correlation between c-Kit status, grading, and angiogenesis in CMCTs to explore their potential significance in humans. C-Kit receptor (c-KitR) expression, microvascular density (MVD), and mast cell granulated and degranulated status density (MCGD and MCDD, resp.) were analyzed in 97 CMCTs, by means of histochemistry, immunohistochemistry double staining, and image analysis system. Data showed that predominantly diffuse cytoplasmic- and predominantly focal paranuclear- (Golgi-like) c-Kit protein (PDC-c-Kit and PFP-c-Kit, resp.) expression correlate with high MVD, G3 histopathological grade, and MCDD. Moreover, predominant cell membrane-c-KitR (PCM-c-KitR) expression status correlates with low MVD, G1-G2 histopathological grade, and MCGD. These findings underline the key role of c-Kit in the biopathology of canine MCTs, indicating a link between aberrant c-Kit expression, increased angiogenesis, and higher histopathological grade. CMCT seems to be a model to study contributions of c-Kit activated MCs in tumour angiogenesis and to evaluate the inhibition of MCs activation by means of c-Kit tyrosine kinase inhibitors, currently translated in humans.

Original languageEnglish
Article number730246
JournalBioMed Research International
Publication statusPublished - 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Medicine(all)


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