For years, the origin of Kaposi’s sarcoma (KS), a rare cancer that sometimes afflicts those infected with HIV, the AIDS virus, has puzzled researchers. Now, pathologists at Jefferson Medical College may be uncovering some of its secrets.
George Murphy, M.D., professor of pathology at Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, and Masatoshi Deguchi, M.D., visiting scientist from Tohuku University in Sendai, Japan, have created a mouse model that resembles an early form of KS. To accomplish this, they have grown and characterized a line of mouse skin cells in the laboratory that they believe are analogous to the cells that go awry early on in human KS.
The type of cell, termed a “dermal dendrocyte,” increases dramatically in number in tumors in early human KS, he says. When Dr. Murphy and his co-workers injected the dermal dendrocytes directly into normal mouse skin, the injected areas developed features similar to human KS.
Steven Benowitz | TJUH
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