ABSTRACT: INTRODUCTION: Keratoacanthoma is a fast-growing crateriform skin tumor. Approximately 25% of such tumors undergo malignant transformation and develop areas of squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). The presence of laminin-322 has been associated with progression to invasive forms of SCC. The aim of this study was to determine whether or not immunohistochemical staining for laminin-322 would be of value in distinguishing between keratoacanthomas, keratoacanthomas with areas of squamous cell carcinoma, and SCCs. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Seventy-four lesions were selected from the pathology archives of our hospital and divided into 4 groups: 20 keratoacanthomas without SCC, 20 keratoacanthomas with areas of squamous cell carcinoma, 20 invasive SCCs (8 with crateriform morphology) unrelated to keratoacanthoma, and 14 problem lesions (keratoacanthomas with areas suggestive of SCC). All 74 lesions were stained for laminin-322. RESULTS: Laminin-322 staining was strongly positive both in areas of SCC in keratoacanthomas with malignant transformation and in invasive SCCs (mostly at the invasive front of the SCC). However, in benign keratoacanthomas, it was only weakly positive and furthermore it was confined to isolated cells or small groups of cells. The 14 problem lesions were reexamined after laminin-322 staining and 8 were diagnosed as keratoacanthomas with incipient SCC and 6 as keratoacanthomas without SCC. CONCLUSIONS: Laminin-322 staining is different in keratoacanthomas and SCCs and would thus be a useful test for differentiating keratoacanthomas from both invasive SCCs and keratoacanthomas with areas of squamous cell carcinoma. It would also be of value in diagnosing keratoacanthomas with areas suggestive of SCC or with incipient SCC.
Actas Dermo-Sifiliográficas 06/2012;