Simultaneous independent primary tumors of the female genital tract occur in 1-2% of gynecological cancer patients, 50-70% of which are synchronous tumors of the endometrium and ovary. Recognition of synchrony upon multiple tumors is crucial for correct prognosis, therapeutic choice, and patient management. Current guidelines for determining synchrony, based on surgical and histopathological findings, are often ambiguous and may require further molecular analyses. However, because of the uniqueness of each tumor and of its intrinsic heterogeneity, these analyses may sometimes be inconclusive. A role for mitochondrial DNA genotyping was previously demonstrated in the diagnosis of synchronous endometrial and ovarian carcinoma. We have analyzed 11 sample pairs of simultaneously revealed endometrial and ovarian cancers and have thereby applied conventional histopathological criteria, current molecular analyses (microsatellite instability, β-catenin immunohistochemical staining/CTNNB1 mutation screening), and mitochondrial DNA sequencing to distinguish separate independent tumors from metastases, comparing the performance and the informative potential of such methods. We have demonstrated that in ambiguous interpretations where histopathological criteria and canonical molecular methods fail to be conclusive, mitochondrial DNA analysis may act as a needle of balance and allow to formulate a diagnosis in 45.5% of our cases. Additional advantages of mitochondrial DNA genotyping, besides the high level of information we demonstrated here, are the easy implementation and the need for small amounts of starting material. Our results show that mitochondrial DNA genotyping may provide a substantial contribution to indisputably recognize the metastatic nature of simultaneously detected endometrial and ovarian cancers and may change the final staging and clinical management of these patients.
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.