The incidence of argentaffin and Paneth cells in epithelial tumours of the large intestine was investigated. Argentaffin cells were found in adenomatous polyps, villus adenomas, polyposis coli, Peutz-Jehgers' polyps, juvenile polyposis, and adenocarcinomas. Paneth cells were not found in metaplastic or juvenile polyps.
The crypt unit was destroyed in neoplasia and argentaffin and Paneth cells occurred either as a result of sequestration or were taking part in the neoplastic process.
The crypt unit was retained in the disorders of epithelial growth. The identification of argentaffin and Paneth cells enabled the crypt to be defined and thus provided a useful, practical aid in the differentiation between neoplasms and disorders of epithelial growth.
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