Author: Prof. Dr. med. Peter Altmeyer

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Last updated on: 29.10.2020

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Vimentin is a filamentous protein that is a component of the cytoskeleton. Vimentin belongs to the type 3 intermediary filaments, to which desmin also belongs.

General information
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Vimentin is found in the cytoplasm of mesenchymal cells, e.g. in fibroblasts, cartilage cells, endothelial cells and smooth muscle cells. The vimentin monomer is a macromolecule with a central alpha helix. Two vimentin monomers combine to form a dimer, 2 vimentin dimers in turn form a tetramer. Vimentin is increasingly formed in sarcomas, dermatofibromas, vascular tumours, neurogenic tumours, etc. (see list) and can therefore be used in combination with cytokeratin and other diagnostic markers (e.g. Melan A) as an important histological diagnostic agent for these tumours.

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  1. Coates SJ et al (2014) Epidermotropic metastatic epithelioid sarcoma: a potential diagnostic pitfall. J Cutan catheter 41:672-676
  2. Qendro V et al(2014) Large-scale proteomic characterization of melanoma expressed proteins reveals nestin and vimentin as biomarkers that can potentially distinguish melanoma subtypes. J Proteomes Res.13:5031-5040


Last updated on: 29.10.2020