Article Type

Original Study


Myoepithelial cells are observed in several exocrine glands. They are star-shaped cells that lie in between the basal lamina and the acinar and ductal cells (Ogawa et al., 1999)30. These cells have the structural fea­tures and function of both smooth muscle cells and epithelium (Franke et al., 1980)31. They contract when the gland is stimulated to secrete. They aid expulsion of glandular se­cretion through compressing or rein­forcing the underlying parenchyma! cells, it was suggested that the major function of myoepithelial cells in sali­vary glands is to support the glandu­lar structure through isometric con­traction (Segawa et a!., 1995)36. They also display the characteristics of epithelium in that they are situated within the glandular epithelium be­tween secretory cells and the base­ment membrane (Tandler, 1965; Harrop, 1968; Leeson and Leeson, 1971)45,19,26 Myoepithelial cells have speculat­ed to play an important role in histo-genesis of some salivary gland tu­mors, such as pleomorphic adenoma, myoepithelioma, adenoid cystic carci­noma and certain other tumors (Bat-sakis et al., 1983; Dardick and Bu- ford-Mason, 1993; Redman, 1994) 2,9,33. Studies of the responses of SMG to ligation of the main excretory duct have established that both acinar cells and cells of the granular ducts are markedly altered morphologically

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.