Neoplastic progression is influenced by the expression of tumour antigens that activate an anti-tumour immune response. Human medical studies show that this body defence is carried out in secondary lymphoid organs (SLOs) but also directly in the tumour through organized cellular aggregates that are called tertiary lymphoid structures (TLSs). However, their occurrence has different meanings in different tumour types. For example, the presence of TLSs in breast cancer is associated with the most aggressive subtypes. This paper aimed to study TLSs in canine mammary simple carcinomas. A morphological assessment of the inflammatory infiltrate was performed on H&E sections of fifty cases. Immunohistochemistry was then carried out to typify the inflammatory cells in the tumour microenvironment. Results showed that, sometimes, inflammatory infiltrates were organized in follicles close to high-grade carcinomas, simulating a lymphoid organization, as in breast cancer. Therefore, we can assume that even in canine mammary tumours, TLSs exist and they are entities to consider due to their presence in the most aggressive histotypes or tumours with a high degree of malignancy.
Keywords: TLSs; mammary gland; tertiary lymphoid structures; tumour.