Mast cells (MCs) accumulate in the stroma surrounding tumors, where they secrete angiogenic cytokines and proteases, and an increased number of MCs have been demonstrated in angiogenesis associated with solid and hematological tumors. The aim of this study is to contribute to the knowledge of distribution of MCs in tumors, investigating the pattern of distribution of tryptase-positive MCs around the blood vessels in human endometrial carcinoma samples by introducing a quantitative approach to characterize their spatial distribution. The results have shown that in human endometrial cancer bioptic specimens the spatial distribution of MCs shows significant deviation from randomness as compared with control group in which, instead, the spatial distribution of MCs is consistent with a random distribution. These findings confirm that MCs enhance tumor angiogenesis and their preferential localization along blood vessels and sites of new vessel formation sustaining the suggestion for an association between MCs and angiogenesis. However, this spatial association between vessels and MCs might simply reflect migrating MCs from the blood stream at vessel growing sites.
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