Home About us Editorial board Ahead of print Current issue Search Archives Submit article Instructions Subscribe Contacts Login 
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2019  |  Volume : 15  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 631-637

Cell cannibalism in oral cancer: A sign of aggressiveness, de-evolution, and retroversion of multicellularity


1 Department of Oral Pathology and Microbiology, Sardar Patel Post Graduate Institute of Dental and Medical Sciences, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India
2 Department of Oral Pathology and Microbiology, Saraswati Dental College, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India
3 Department of Community Medicine, Jawahar Lal Nehru Medical College, AMU, Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh, India
4 Department of Pathology, Jawahar Lal Nehru Medical College, Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Safia Siddiqui
Department of Oral Pathology and Microbiology, Sardar Patel Post Graduate Institute of Dental and Medical Sciences, Lucknow - 226 025, Uttar Pradesh
India
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jcrt.JCRT_504_17

Rights and Permissions

Background: According to Darwin's theory of evolution, complex creatures evolve from more simplistic ancestors. Dollo's law of irreversibility states that evolution is irreversible. However, cancer cells tend to follow anti-Dollo's law. Unfavorable conditions such as hypoxia, acidic pH and low nutrients cause the cancer cells to switch their lifestyle atavistically in order to survive. They start behaving like a unicellular organism. There is a switch from normal metabolism to Warburg effect and finally cannibalism. Cannibalism is a cell eating cell phenomenon. It is defined as a large cell enclosing a smaller one within its cytoplasm and is known by odd names such as “bird's eye cells” or “signet ring cells.” Smaller tumor cells are found in the cytoplasm of larger tumor cells with crescent-shaped nucleus. Cannibalistic cells (CCs) are a feature of aggressive tumors. These cell types are vulnerable to metastasis. Aim: The aim of this study is to identify CCs in various histological grades of oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) and to relate them with the pattern of invasion, lymphocytic response (LR), and mitotic figures (Mfs). The purpose of the article is to establish it as a marker of aggressiveness and metastasis and as an evidence of de-evolution and retroversion of multicellularity. Materials and Methods: Sixty-five histologically confirmed cases of OSCC were studied. Pattern of invasion, LR, number of CCs, and Mfs were recorded on 5 μ hematoxylin and eosin-stained tissue sections. ANOVA and t-test were applied; P < 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results: CCs were more in sections with patchy LR, increased Mfs, and grade IV pattern of invasion. Conclusion: With increase in dedifferentiation, tumor cells start behaving like unicellular organisms with cell eating cell characteristics.


[FULL TEXT] [PDF]*
Print this article     Email this article
 Next article
 Previous article
 Table of Contents

 Similar in PUBMED
   Search Pubmed for
   Search in Google Scholar for
 Related articles
 Citation Manager
 Access Statistics
 Reader Comments
 Email Alert *
 Add to My List *
 * Requires registration (Free)
 

 Article Access Statistics
    Viewed457    
    Printed17    
    Emailed0    
    PDF Downloaded19    
    Comments [Add]    

Recommend this journal