The Sequential Development of Cancer: A Morphologic Perspective,
NATIONAL INST OF ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH SCIENCES RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK NC
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Cancer development proceeds through sequential or contemporaneous morphological changes from normal, preneoplastic, and premalignant lesions to highly malignant neoplasms. The morphological continuum that comprises cancer development is usually divided into diagnostic categories of hyperplasia or dysplasia, benign neoplasia, and malignant neoplasia based on perceived biological behavior. Although a morphological continuum may be evident from the histologic evaluation of preneoplastic and neoplastic lesions, it is not axiomatic that all preneoplastic or benign lesions progress. The probability of regression or progression from one category to another, or the rates at which these might occur are seldom known for spontaneous or induced neoplasms. Host factors as well as exogenous stimuli may influence these events. The concept of neoplastic progression and the limitations of our knowledge of the biologic behavior of preneoplastic lesions and benign neoplasms are important considerations in the interpretation of pathology data from carcinogenicity studies.
- Medicine and Medical Research
- Anatomy and Physiology