Sanguinaria-associated oral leukoplakia: Comparison with other benign and dysplastic leukoplakic lesions

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Objective.This study was undertaken to compare and contrast biomarkers and ploidy data from maxillary gingiva leukoplakias associated with dentifrices and mouthrinses containing the herbal compound sanguinaria with other forms of oral benign and premalignant mucosal keratosis.Study design.Representative archived specimens of benign keratosis, sanguinaria-associated keratosis, and keratosis with dysplasia were used for computerized image analysis and biomarker immunohistochemical assays to assess ploidy, DNA content, and p53 and proliferating cell nuclear antigen immunoreactivity of nuclei.Results.DNA content was significantly higher and higher numbers of cell populations with hyperploid nuclei were encountered in the dysplastic group than in the other two groups (P < .001). Sanguinaria-associated keratosis did not harbor significant numbers of p53-expressing nuclei, yet it showed a significant elevation in proliferating cell nuclear antigen–labeled nuclei in total, in the basal layer, and in the spinous layer in comparison with benign keratoses (P < .001). In addition, 1.5% of the sanguinaria-associated leukoplakia epithelial cell population was characterized by nuclei with a greater than 4-fold increase in DNA content.Conclusions.Sanguinaria-associated keratoses show some marker and image analysis profiles similar to those of nonsanguinaria dysplastic lesions of the lip and mucosa. Preparations containing sanguinaria should be avoided until the risk for malignant transformation is determined. (Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol Endod 2000;89455-64)

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