Year : 2012  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 82-86

Epithelial-mesenchymal transition: Understanding the basic concept

Department of Oral Pathology, Vishnu Dental College, Bhimavaram, Andhra Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Neha Nayan
Department of Oral Pathology, Vishnu Dental College, Bhimavaram - 534 202, Andhra Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0975-8844.106190

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The epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) is described as a rapid and reversible process of change of cell phenotype seen during embryonic development, organ fibrosis, and tumor progression. EMT was first described by Gary Greenberg and Elizabeth Hay in 1982. During EMT the epithelial cells alter their cell polarity, reorganize their cytoskeleton thus become isolated and motile. Depending upon the biological context in which they occur, EMT is divided into three types namely EMT type I, II, III. The article describes the process of EMT implicated in the oral cavity as in palate and root development (type I EMT), gingival fibromatosis and oral sub-mucous fibrosis (type II EMT), and oral squamous cell carcinoma (type III EMT). The reverse process of EMT is called as mesenchymal-epithelial transition seen in association with kidney formation.

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