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Keywords:

  • molecular diagnostics;
  • oncology;
  • pathology;
  • small animal;
  • surgical oncology

Abstract

Lymphangiosarcomas are uncommon vascular neoplasms that arise from lymphatic endothelial cells (LECs). They efface and replace normal subcutaneous tissue and are characterised by arborising, vascular channels lined by a single layer of pleomorphic endothelial cells and a paucity of erythrocytes. Lymphangiosarcomas are architecturally similar to hemangiosarcomas, a common malignancy of vascular origin arising from blood vascular endothelial cells. Common immunohistochemical markers for vascular endothelium, such as Factor VIII-related antigen (F8RA) and CD31, have traditionally been used to confirm the diagnosis of tumours of vascular origin. However, these markers fail to differentiate between lymphangiosarcoma and hemangiosarcoma, which often show overlapping morphologic features, disparate clinical behaviour and require different treatment modalities. Here we describe the use of two novel LEC-specific markers, lymphatic vessel endothelial receptor-1 (LYVE-1) and prospero-related homeobox gene-1 (PROX-1), to further differentiate between vascular tumours of lymphatic (lymphangiosarcoma) and blood (hemangiosarcoma) endothelial cell origin in the dog.