Signet ring cell carcinoma of the colon, light micrograph

Signet ring cell carcinoma of the colon, light micrograph

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Credit: WEBPATHOLOGY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Signet ring cell carcinoma of the colon, light micrograph. This is a rare form of adenocarcinoma, a cancer of the glandular lining that is found in many different organs, including the digestive tract. Colon cancer is one of the most common cancers in North America and Western Europe. It is thought to be connected to a diet high in fat and low in fibre. Signet ring cell carcinoma makes up around 1 percent of all colorectal cancers. The signet ring cells across bottom are arranged in diffuse sheets, small nests, or clusters. The signet ring cells across top are surrounded by extracellular mucin. The oval or crescent nuclei are hyperchromatic and pushed to the periphery by intracellular mucin. The tumour spreads via peritoneal dissemination and has an extremely poor prognosis.

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