Calcineurin is a calcium/calmodulin-regulated protein phosphatase. By using enzyme-immunoassay and immunocytochemistry with an affinity-purified specific antibody to this protein, we have found that calcineurin is expressed in the central and peripheral neuroendocrine cells, also termed amine precursor uptake and decarboxylation cells. In addition, calcineurin immunoreactivity was found in the central neuroendocrine neoplasms such as pineocytoma, olfactory neuroblastoma and paraganglioma. The present findings indicate that the activity of phosphatase regulated by calcium and calmodulin is involved in neuroendocrine functions, and that the enzyme can be useful for the identification and characterization of neuroendocrine cell tumors.
- Neuroendocrine cell
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