Cytoplasmic inclusions of astrocytic elements of glial tumors: special reference to round granulated body and eosinophilic hyaline droplets

Tsutomu Hitotsumatsu, Toru Iwaki, Masashi Fukui, Jun Tateishi

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22 Citations (Scopus)


Round granulated body (RGB) and eosinophilic hyaline droplets (EHDs) have been described as cytoplasmic inclusions of certain astrocytic tumors. In the previous literature, however, these inclusions have been described using various terms or regarded as nosologically the same entity. Light microscopically, RGB apeared as a round discrete body filled with fine uniform granules, while EHDs demonstrated a cluster of bright eosinophilic, round objects of various size. They could be clearly distinguished even by conventional histochemical staining such as the Masson trichrome stain and the phosphotungstic acid hematoxylin preparation. Both RGB and EHDs expressed positive immunoreactions for glial fibrillary acidic protein, several lysosomal markers, and some stress-response proteins. The ultrastructural appearances of these inclusions were distinct, however, one common feature was that they consisted of aggregations of numerous membrane-bound electron-dense bodies. Thus, both inclusions appear to be produced by neoplastic astrocytes and are possibly related to the lysosomal system. We examined the presence of RGB and EHDs in 138 astrocytic tumors. Both inclusions occurred most frequently in pleomorphic xanthoastrocytomas, followed by gangliogliomas and pilocytic astrocytomas. Subependymal giant cell astrocytomas exhibited only RGBs. RGBs and EHDs were not seen in any abundance in glioblastomas, gliosarcomas, fibrillary astrocytomas, protoplasmic astrocytomas, or oligo-astrocytomas. Some glioblastomas, however, showed only EHDs in small numbers. Several anaplastic astrocytomas were associated with a large number of RGBs and/or EHDs, and they revealed only rare mitosis despite marked cellular pleomorphism. Although RGB and EHDs have different morphological features, the presence of these inclusions in abundance may represent either a degenerative change, a long-standing lesion, or an indolent growth of the astrocytic tumors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)501-510
Number of pages10
JournalActa neuropathologica
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 1994

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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