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An Electron Microscopic Study of Bowen's Disease among Paraquat Manufacturers
Chun-Hsiang Chang, Jung-Der Wang, Hsu-Po Yeh, Ying-Chin Wu
Dermatol Sinica 9: 15-22, 1991

Bowen's disease was observed among parapuat manufacturers and was reported clinically, histopathologically and epidemiologically by previous investigators. In order to understand its ultrastructural changes, we presented this original study of electron microscopic observations, and the results were compared with the findings of Bowen's disease in victims of chronic arsenicism and ordinary Bowen's disease without any significant etiological factor. There was no significant ultrastructural difference among these 3 groups of patients with Bowen's disease. The conspicuous findings included widened intercellular spaces, epidermal cytoplasmic projections or microvilli, decreased desmosomes, condensed or aggregated tonofilaments, multinucleated giant keratinocytes, intracytoplasmic desmosomes, and dyskeratotic keratinocytes with dyskeratotic products composed of remnants of nuclear substances and aggregated tonofilaments. Our study revealed that Bowen's disease in paraquat manufacturers was clinically , histopathologically and ultrastructurally indistinguishable from Bowen's disease in victims of chronic arsenicism and ordinary Bowen's disease.Since bipyridyl was suspected as the etiological factor of Bowen's disease among paraquat workers, it was suggested that, in addition to arsenic, witch was the only well-known causative agent of Bowen's disease, bipyridyl might be the second chemical substance capable of inducing Bowen's disease. In order to confirm the role of bipyridyl as an etiological factor of Bowen's disease, further studies in animal models such as topical application of bipyridyl and UV irradiation are needed.

   
   
 
 
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