WEBPATHOLOGY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY WEBPATHOLOGY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
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 are arranged in diffuse sheets, small nests, or clusters. Here, there is also extensive production of extracellular mucin (light areas). 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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