Pericytes are modified smooth muscle cells that closely enwrap small blood vessels, regulating and supporting the microvasculature through direct endothelial contact. Pericytes demonstrate a distinct immunohistochemical profile, including expression of smooth muscle actin, CD146, platelet-derived growth factor receptor β, and regulator of G-protein signaling 5. Previously, pericyte-related antigens have been observed to be present among a group of soft tissue tumors with a perivascular growth pattern, including glomus tumor, myopericytoma, and angioleiomyoma. Similarly, malignant tumor cells have been shown to have a pericyte-like immunoprofile when present in a perivascular location, seen in malignant melanoma, glioblastoma, and adenocarcinoma. Here, we examine well-differentiated liposarcoma specimens, which showed some element of perivascular areas with the appearance of smooth muscle (n = 7 tumors). Immunohistochemical staining was performed for pericyte antigens, including smooth muscle actin, CD146, platelet-derived growth factor receptor β, and regulator of G-protein signaling 5. Results showed consistent pericytic marker expression among liposarcoma tumor cells within a perivascular distribution. MDM2 immunohistochemistry and fluorescence in situ hybridization for MDM2 revealed that these perivascular cells were of tumor origin (7/7 tumors), whereas double immunohistochemical detection for CD31/CD146 ruled out an endothelial cell contribution. These findings further support the concept of pericytic mimicry, already established in diverse malignancies, and its presence in well-differentiated liposarcoma. The extent to which pericytic mimicry has prognostic significance in liposarcoma is as yet unknown.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine