Somatic mutations in the RET proto-oncogene are involved in the pathogenesis of an important subset (40-60%) of sporadic medullary thyroid carcinomas (MTCs) and less frequently (0-31%) in benign, sporadic phaeochromocytomas. Since limited data exist regarding the significance of somatic RET mutations in malignant phaeochromocytomas, we analysed a multicentre series of proven malignant (i.e., metastasised) phaeochromocytomas. Analogous with MTCs, where RET mutations lead to an aggressive behaviour, we hypothesised that somatic mutations would occur more frequently in malignant than in benign phaeochromocytomas. Paraffin-embedded tissue was available from 29 malignant and 27 benign phaeochromocytomas. Exons 10, 11 and 16 were analysed by non-radioactive single-strand conformation polymorphism, heteroduplex gel electrophoresis, restriction enzyme digestion and aberrant band patterns by non-isotopic sequencing. In only 1 of 29 malignant phaeochromocytomas was a mis-sense mutation found (at codon 634 of exon 11), whereas in 15% (4/27) of the benign tumours a point mutation was detected (in 3 tumours in exon 16 at codon 918 and in 1 tumour in exon 10 at codon 618). Absence of these mutations in non-tumourous DNA proved their somatic origin. Contrary to what has been reported for MTCs, oncogenic RET mutations are not associated with an aggressive tumour behaviour in sporadic phaeochromocytomas.
|Tijdschrift||International Journal of Cancer|
|Nummer van het tijdschrift||5|
|Status||Gepubliceerd - 1998|