Calponin and h-caldesmon expression in synovial sarcoma; the use of calponin in diagnosis

Cyril Fisher, E. Montgomery, V. Healy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Aims: To assess the frequency of expression and potential diagnostic utility of calponin and caldesmon in synovial sarcomas. Methods and results: Immunohistochemistry with antibodies to calponin and h-caldesmon was undertaken in paraffin sections from 50 synovial sarcomas (19 biphasic and 31 monophasic, of which one biphasic and eight monophasic tumours had poorly differentiated areas), 10 each of malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumour (MPNST), solitary fibrous tumour (SFT), dermatofibrosarcoma (DFSP), Ewing's sarcoma (ES/PNET), and neuroblastoma, eight alveolar rhabdomyosarcomas, five adult fibrosarcomas and five carcinosarcomas. Nine of 19 biphasic synovial sarcomas were positive for calponin in spindle and glandular areas, nine in spindle cells only, and one in glands only. All monophasic synovial sarcomas and poorly differentiated areas expressed calponin; in monophasic tumours this was focally (29% of cases), moderately (39%), or diffusely (32%) positive and the poorly differentiated areas were usually moderately or diffusely positive. Four synovial sarcomas showed focal reactivity for h-caldesmon. Calponin was found in 4/10 MPNST, 7/10 SFT, 4/10 DFSP, 3/5 fibrosarcomas and the spindle component of the carcinosarcomas. H-caldesmon was weakly positive in 1/10 MPNST, 4/10 SFT, 0/10 DFSP, 0/5 fibrosarcomas and 1/5 carcinosarcomas (glands only). Both markers were negative in the other small round cell tumours. Conclusions: Calponin can be used as an additional marker for synovial sarcoma. Its absence argues against the diagnosis. The presence of calponin might be useful in distinguishing poorly differentiated synovial sarcoma from other small round cell tumours. H-caldesmon is not helpful in diagnosis of synovial sarcoma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)588-593
Number of pages6
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2003


  • Caldesmon
  • Calponin
  • Ewing's sarcoma
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Synovial sarcoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Histology


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