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An Official Publication of the Indian Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathologists

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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 23  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 267-272
Structure, function and role of CD44 in neoplasia

Department of Oral Pathology, School of Dental Sciences, Sharda University, Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Mithilesh N Mishra
Department of Oral Pathology, School of Dental Sciences, Sharda University, Knowledge Park III, Gautam Buddha Nagar, Greater Noida - 201 308, Uttar Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jomfp.JOMFP_246_18

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CD44 is a group of protein molecules which perform a variety of functions. Their wide range of functions are mainly based on their multiple variations in their molecular structure. Furthermore, they are distributed in various tissues of the human body. They have a unique property of cell adhesion, which can lead to interaction between two different cells or a cell and its pericellular matrix. CD44 as a cell surface adhesive molecule helps in aggregation and migration of tumor cells. CD44 plays an important role in cancer of bladder, liver, lungs, pancreas, etc. Expression profile of CD44 has been seen in the epithelia of the lip, tongue, gingiva, hard palate, floor of the mouth, buccal mucosa and pharynx. The relationship between the expression of CD44 v6 and regional lymph node metastasis has been studied immunohistochemically. The expression of CD44 v6 was apparently downregulated in oral squamous cell carcinoma, but not in normal oral mucosa. Carcinomas expressing lower levels of CD44 v6 exhibited more frequent regional lymph node metastasis. No significant relation was found between the expression of CD44 v6 in primary and metastatic lesions. Still, the precise function of CD44 in the metastatic process and the degree of involvement in human malignancies is yet to be established.

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Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology | Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow
Online since 15th Aug, 2007