Colloid Cyst of the Third Ventricle: A Comparative Ultrastructural Study of Neuraxis Cysts and Choroid Plexus Epithelium
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Thirteen colloid cysts (CC), four Rathke cleft cysts (RCC), three follicular cysts of normal pituitary gland (FCP), four enterogenous cysts (EC), three normal choroid plexi (CP), three choroid plexus papillomas (CPP), and several samples of normal bronchial mucosa and ependyma were studied by electron microscopy. The ultrastructure of most of the CC was indistinguishable from that of RCC, FCP, EC, and normal bronchial mucosa in demonstrating nonciliated and ciliated epithelial cells, goblet cells, basal cells, and intermediate forms, some showing evidence of early squamous differentiation. Two CC displayed mostly squamous differentiation, and one contained basally situated cells resembling myoepithelial cells. Although the RCC and FCP displayed features similar to those of CC, they also contained cells with electron-dense granules indicating pituitary hormone production and scattered cells showing oncocytic change. EC were lined by either squamous cells or mucin-producing columnar cells. Every CC, RCC, FCP, and EC contained cells covered by glycocalyx. In contrast to aforementioned lesions, ependymal lining, CP, and CPP were composed of a single cell type, one with numerous villi, few cilia, and no signs of keratinization, mucin production, or glycocalyx coating. It is concluded that the ultrastructural properties of CC are the same as those of cysts of endodermal or ectodermal origin and of respiratory mucosa. No ultrastructural similarities were observed between CC and normal or neoplastic neuroepithelium. These ultrastructural findings support the concept of an enterogenous origin of colloid cysts and highlight their similarity to RCC.