Limits of immunohistochemistry in the diagnosis of epithelial downgrowth

K. L. Bergwerk, P. S. Rosenbaum, K. E. Tanaka, I. J. Udeil

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: The immunohistochemical staining characteristics of corneal endothelium was studied to clarify the usefulness of these stains in the pathologic diagnosis of epithelial downgrowth. Methods: Tissue sections of formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded corneal specimens (keratoconus, pseudophakic bullous keratopathy, epithelial downgrowth, failed corneal grafts with retrocorneal fibrous membranes, and postmortem control corneas) were immunostained with a panel of corneal epithelial and endothelial markers (EMA, KAE 1/3, CAM5.2, Factor VIII, CD-34, CD-31) and with Vimentin using the Strept-Avidin technique (Dako). Results: Corneal endothelium is immunonegative for endothelial cell markers (CD-34,CD-31, and Factor VIII) and displays immunopositivity for epithelial markers (KAE 1/3, CAM 5.2). Both retrocorneal fibrous membranes and epithelial downgrowth were immunopositive for KAE1/3, CAMS.2, and Vimentin, with epithelial downgrowth additionally positive for EMA. Conclusion: Immunohistochemistry is of limited usefulness in the pathologic differentiation of corneal endothelium from epithelial downgrowth and from retrocorneal fibrous membrane formation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S83
JournalInvestigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 15 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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