Immunohistochemical detection of schwannomin and neurofibromin in vestibular schwannomas, ependymomas and meningiomas

J Neuropathol Exp Neurol. 1997 Apr;56(4):382-90. doi: 10.1097/00005072-199704000-00007.


In addition to schwannomas, patients with neurofibromatosis type 2 (NF2) frequently develop meningiomas and occasionally, ependymomas. Using DNA and protein analyses, we have shown NF2 gene mutations and lack of the gene product schwannomin in 29 schwannomas, 10 meningiomas, and in 7 ependymomas. We have raised antibodies (ABs) to peptides from the C-terminal (5990-AB) and N-terminal (5991-AB) domains of schwannomin. The ABs specifically detected a 65 kDa protein in a Schwann cell line and recognized schwannomin in the cytoplasm of Schwann cells (SCH), perineurial cells, and vestibular ganglion neurons. None of the 29 schwannomas were stained by the 5990-AB. Only 4 schwannomas were stained by the 5991-AB, indicating that most truncated schwannomins were unstable or not expressed in schwannomas. Seven of 10 meningiomas, including 3 tumors from NF2 patients, were not stained by either 5990-AB or 5991-AB. Only 2 of 7 ependymomas lacked schwannomin. Complete lack of schwannomin in these tumors supports a tumor suppressor function for schwannomin in some meningiomas and ependymomas. All tumors showed staining with an antibody to a C-terminal peptide of neurofibromin, confirming that full-length neurofibromin is present in these vestibular schwannomas, meningiomas, and ependymomas. The presence of schwannomin in some meningiomas and in the majority of ependymomas indicates that additional genes are likely to play a role in tumorigenesis of these tumors.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Brain Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Ependymoma / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Membrane Proteins / genetics
  • Membrane Proteins / metabolism*
  • Meningeal Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Meningioma / metabolism*
  • Mutation
  • Neurilemmoma / metabolism*
  • Neurofibromatosis 2 / genetics
  • Neurofibromin 1
  • Neurofibromin 2
  • Proteins / metabolism*
  • Vestibular Diseases / metabolism*


  • Membrane Proteins
  • Neurofibromin 1
  • Neurofibromin 2
  • Proteins