Nucleolar organizer regions in optic gliomas

Michael A. Burnstine, Leonard A. Levin, David N. Louis, E. Tessa Hedley-whyte, William J. Kupsky, Dietrich Doepner, Daniel M. Albert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Summary: The biological nature of optic gliomas is controversial, with some considering them benign hamartomatous lesions, and others believing them to be true neoplasms. We evaluated the use of colloid silver impregnation of nucleolar organizer region-associated proteins (AgNORs) in making this distinction. Thirty-one optic gliomas, 14 optic nerve meningiomas, and a single case of giant cell glioblastoma multiforme (monstrocellular glioma) of the optic chiasm were stained for AgNORs and counted in a masked fashion. The optic gliomas contained 2.01±0.09 AgNORs per nucleus, similar to that of optic nerve meningiomas (2.15±0.15) and our previously reported counts for diffuse fibrillary astrocytoma (2.22±0.10), and significantly more than that of reactive astrocytosis (1.18±0.02). Six of the seven optic gliomas examined had compound AgNORs, a feature associated with malignancy in other tumour types. AgNOR counts did not correlate with clinical features, including those seen during the post-operation course. These data suggest that optic gliomas may be true neoplasms, and not benign hamartomas.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1465-1476
Number of pages12
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1993
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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