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A Journal on Forensic Medicine




Minerva Medicolegale 2009 September;129(3):119-25

language: Italian

The support of the immunohistochemical analysis in the pleuric mesothelioma diagnosis

Manzoni S., Poglio A., Tiboni F., Restori M.

Istituto di Medicina Legale di Brescia, Brescia, Italia


AIM: In the latest few years, many industrialized countries including Italy, have seen a constant growth of asbestos-related diseases and even though there are laws enacted in order to prevent them, the risk of the categories exposed remains high. In this study, the diagnostic accuracy of some immunohistochemical markers of pleural mesothelioma (cytokeratin 5/6 and calretinin) were tested for an eventual application in order to permit both clinical and anatomopathological diagnosis.
METHODS: Fragments of pleural and pulmonary tissues taken during forensic autopsies of 36 subjects deceased of suspected mesothelioma (30 cases in which the diagnosis was certain) were analyzed using human monoclonal anticytokeratin 5/6 and anticalretinin antibodies for immunohistochemical study.
RESULTS: Thirty-one cases resulted positive for cytokeratin 5/6, while only 24 cases were positive for calretinin; the sensibility for cytokeratin 5/6 was 95% and 79% for calretinin, while the specificity for cytokeratin was 66% and 100% for calretinin.
CONCLUSIONS:The level of sensibility and specificity observed, confirmed both the reliability of the antibodies tested and the necessity of the combined use of different antibodies for a greater response of the immunohistochemical result.

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