Granular variant of a histiocytic tumor on the toe of a cat: Case report and literature review

Vet Clin Pathol. 2023 Mar;52(1):102-107. doi: 10.1111/vcp.13152. Epub 2022 Jun 24.


A 16-year-old female spayed domestic shorthaired cat was examined for lameness and a mass on the fourth digit of the right hindlimb. Cytologic examination of an aspirate of the mass revealed large discrete cells admixed with low numbers of well-granulated mast cells. The discrete cells contained single to many variably sized light pink to purple granules in their cytoplasm and had pleomorphic nuclei, with intranuclear cytoplasmic inclusions. Karyomegalic, binucleated and multinucleated cells were seen. Histologic examination of formalin-fixed sections of the excised mass showed a mildly infiltrative, unencapsulated, multinodular dermal mass that extended into the subcutis and consisted of similar discrete cells. On immunohistochemical staining, the tumor cells expressed ionized calcium-binding adapter molecule 1 (Iba1) and CD18. The tumor cells did not express CD3, CD20, CD117, pancytokeratin (AE1/AE3), melanoma antigen (Melan-A), multiple myeloma oncogene-1 (MUM1), melanoma-associated antigen (PNL-2), and S-100. Low numbers of tumor cells expressed CD204 and protein gene product 9.5 (PGP9.5). Granules were variably positive for Periodic-acid Schiff (PAS) and Alcian blue. On transmission electron microscopy, the cells contained filopodia, abundant endoplasmic reticulum, and moderate numbers of low-density membrane-bound granules. This case documents a previously undescribed granular variant of a histiocytic tumor in a cat.

Keywords: cancer; cytopathology; feline; histiocytes; histopathology; immunohistochemistry; skin.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Female
  • Hematologic Neoplasms* / veterinary
  • Melanoma* / veterinary
  • Microscopy, Electron, Transmission / veterinary
  • Toes