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Histology, microscopy, anatomy and disease
Histology, microscopy, anatomy and disease

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3.2 Neoplasia and hyperplasia

For this activity, refer to the ‘Week 4’ category within the virtual microscope, Slides 15–18.

Activity 5

Open the virtual microscope [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] in a new window or tab. Find Slides 15–17 in the Week 4 category.

Start with Slide 15. It shows a primary liver carcinoma, a cancer which has arisen from a liver cell. Such primary tumours are relatively uncommon in the liver. Notice the irregular cell morphology, the lack of normal liver anatomy and the invasion of the normal tissue by the cancer. (For comparison look back at the normal liver on Slide 9 in Week 2.)

Next look at Slide 16 which is also from a liver. In this instance the tissue contains a secondary tumour, an adenocarcinoma, which has arisen from epithelial cells. This tumour is a metastasis from the primary site, which has been carried to the liver through the blood. However, it is not possible to tell from the H&E staining where the original tumour was located.

Look at Slide 17. It shows uncontrolled cell growth (hyperplasia) in the skin caused by a viral infection (Molluscum contagiosum). In some cases viral infection can lead to neoplasia; however, viral infections are generally controlled by the immune system. (Look at Slide 18 to compare this with normal skin.)