Retinal hemangioblastoma. A histologic, immunohistochemical, and ultrastructural evaluation

Ophthalmology. 1992 Jan;99(1):140-5. doi: 10.1016/s0161-6420(92)32024-x.


The authors evaluated the histologic, immunohistochemical, and ultrastructural characteristics of two eyes with retinal hemangioblastoma from patients with von Hippel-Lindau and von Hippel disease. Results of histologic evaluation showed the eyes to have degenerative changes and residual retinal hemangioblastoma. Immunohistochemical stains performed for MAC-387, factor XIIIa, lysozyme, alpha 1 anti-chymotrypsin (histiocyte markers), factor VIII-associated antigen, ulex europeaus (endothelial markers), neuron-specific enolase, chromogranin, neurofilament (neuroectodermal/neural/neuroendocrine markers) and glial fibrillary acid protein (glial marker) showed normal retinal vascular endothelium, neurons, and glial cells to stain where expected. Vascular endothelium in the retinal hemangioblastomas stained for factor VIII and ulex europeaus. Interstitial cells in the stroma of the tumors failed to stain for the histiocyte markers, chromogranin, and neurofilament. The stromal cells stained for glial fibrillary acid protein and neuron specific enolase. Ultrastructural findings in both eyes included endothelial/pericyte-lined vascular channels, elongated stromal cells, and plump, vacuolated stromal cells with ultrastructural features consistent with glial cells. This study supports the concept that retinal hemangioblastoma is composed of a proliferation of capillaries and glial cells.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Endothelium, Vascular / ultrastructure
  • Eye Enucleation
  • Female
  • Hemangiosarcoma / metabolism
  • Hemangiosarcoma / ultrastructure*
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Retinal Diseases / metabolism
  • Retinal Diseases / pathology*
  • von Hippel-Lindau Disease / metabolism
  • von Hippel-Lindau Disease / pathology