Publications by authors named "Enrico Solcia"

75 Publications

Poorly Cohesive Carcinoma of the Nonampullary Small Intestine: A Distinct Histologic Subtype With Prognostic Significance.

Am J Surg Pathol 2021 Oct 11. Epub 2021 Oct 11.

Anatomic Pathology Unit, Department of Molecular Medicine, University of Pavia Anatomic Pathology, Fondazione IRCCS San Matteo Hospital Clinical Epidemiology & Biometry Unit, Fondazione IRCCS San Matteo Hospital Department of Internal Medicine, University of Pavia and Fondazione IRCCS San Matteo Hospital Medical Oncology Unit, ICS Maugeri-IRCCS SpA SB, Pavia Pathology Unit, Department of Surgical and Diagnostic Sciences (DISC), University of Genoa and Ospedale Policlinico San Martino IRCCS, Genoa Surgical Pathology Unit, Department of Medicine (DIMED), University of Padua Veneto Institute of Oncology, IOV-IRCCS, Padua Biosciences Laboratory, IRCCS Istituto Romagnolo per lo Studio dei Tumori (IRST) "Dino Amadori," Meldola Pathology Unit, Department of Medicine and Surgery, University of Insubria, Varese Gatroenterology Unit, ASST Fatebenefratelli-Sacco, L. Sacco University Hospital Department of Biochemical and Clinical Sciences, University of Milan, Milan Division of General and HPB Surgery, ASST Rhodense, Rho Gatroenterology Unit, Department of Systems Medicine, University of Rome "Tor Vergata," Rome, Italy Department of Pathology, Koç University Hospital and Koç University Research Center for Translational Medicine (KUTTAM), Istanbul, Turkey.

Poorly cohesive carcinomas (PCCs) are neoplasms characterized by a dyshesive cell invasion pattern featuring single-cell or cord-like stromal infiltration. Although they have been extensively studied in the stomach and other digestive system organs, limited data regarding nonampullary small bowel poorly cohesive carcinomas (SB-PCCs) are hitherto available. The aims of our study were to analyze the clinicopathologic and immunophenotypical features of SB-PCCs (PCC pattern accounting for >50% of the neoplasm) and to compare them with small bowel adenocarcinomas (SBAs), not otherwise specified (SBAs-NOS) and with cancers with a histologically distinct PCC component accounting for 10% to 50% of the neoplasm (mixed-poorly-cohesive-glandular-SBAs). Fifteen SB-PCCs were identified and compared with 95 SBAs-NOS and 27 mixed-poorly-cohesive-glandular-SBAs. Most SB-PCCs (67%) were composed of <10% of signet-ring cells, and all but 1 SB-PCCs exhibited loss of membranous expression of E-cadherin. Compared with SBAs-NOS, SB-PCCs showed a significantly younger patient age at diagnosis, and a stronger association with Crohn disease, and both SB-PCCs and mixed-poorly-cohesive-glandular-SBAs featured a higher rate of lymphovascular and perineural invasion and a lower percentage of mismatch repair-deficient cases. Importantly, the cancer-specific survival of SB-PCC (hazard ratio: 3.81; 95% confidence interval: 1.90-7.64; P<0.001) and mixed-poorly-cohesive-glandular-SBA (4.12; 2.20-7.71; P<0.001) patients was significantly worse compared with SBAs-NOS cases. This study provides objective evidence to the World Health Organization (WHO) 2019 introduction of SB-PCC as a distinctive subtype of nonampullary SBA, by virtue of its unique clinical and histologic features, and suggests that both SB-PCCs and mixed-poorly-cohesive-glandular-SBAs should be separated from SBAs-NOS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/PAS.0000000000001821DOI Listing
October 2021

Prognostic relevance and putative histogenetic role of cytokeratin 7 and MUC5AC expression in Crohn's disease-associated small bowel carcinoma.

Virchows Arch 2021 Oct 8;479(4):667-678. Epub 2021 May 8.

Unit of Anatomic Pathology, Department of Molecular Medicine, University of Pavia and Fondazione IRCCS San Matteo Hospital, Via Carlo Forlanini 16 -, 27100, Pavia, Italy.

Most Crohn's disease-associated small bowel carcinomas (CrD-SBCs) are diagnosed in advanced stage and have poor prognosis. To improve diagnosis and therapy, a better knowledge of tumour precancerous lesions, histotypes and prognostic factors is needed. We investigated histologically and immunohistochemically 52 CrD-SBCs and 51 small bowel carcinomas unrelated to inflammatory disease, together with their tumour-associated mucosa, looking for Crohn-selective changes. Histologic patterns and phenotypic markers potentially predictive of CrD-SBC histogenesis and prognosis were analysed. Cytokeratin 7 or MUC5AC-positive metaplastic changes were found in about half of investigated CrD-SBCs, significantly more frequently than in CrD-unrelated SBCs. They correlated with metaplastic changes of their associated mucosa, while being absent in normal ileal mucosa. Histologic patterns suggestive for progression of some cytokeratin 7 and/or MUC5AC-positive metaplastic lesions into cancer of the same phenotype were also observed. Patient survival analyses showed that tumour cytokeratin 7 or MUC5AC expression and non-cohesive histotype were adverse prognostic factors at univariable analysis, while cytokeratin 7 and non-cohesive histotype were also found to predict worse survival in stage- and age-inclusive multivariable analyses. Besides conventional dysplasia, hyperplasia-like non-conventional lesions were observed in CrD-SBC-associated mucosa, with patterns suggestive for a histogenetic link with adjacent cancer. In conclusion the cytokeratin 7 and/or MUC5AC-positive metaplastic foci and the non-conventional growths may have a role in cancer histogenesis, while tumour cytokeratin 7 and non-cohesive histotype may also predict poor patient survival. Present findings are worth being considered in future prospective histogenetic and clinical studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00428-021-03109-2DOI Listing
October 2021

Neuroendocrine neoplasms of the esophagus and stomach.

Pathologica 2021 Feb;113(1):5-11

Institute of Pathology, University Hospital and University of Lausanne, Switzerland.

Esophageal neuroendocrine neoplasms (E-NENs) are much rarer than other gastro-entero-pancreatic neuroendocrine neoplasms, the majority showing aggressive behavior with early dissemination and poor prognosis. Among E-NENs, exceptionally rare well differentiated neuroendocrine tumors (E-NET) and more frequent esophageal poorly differentiated neuroendocrine carcinomas (E-NEC) and mixed neuroendocrine-non neuroendocrine neoplasms (MiNEN) can be recognized. E-NECs usually exhibit a small cell morphology or mixed small and large cells. Esophageal MiNEN are composed of NEC component admixed with adenocarcinoma or squamous cell carcinoma. Gastric (G) NENs encompass a wide spectrum of entities ranging from indolent G-NETs to highly aggressive G-NECs and MiNENs. Among G-NETs, ECL-cell NETs are the most common and, although composed of histamine-producing cells, are a heterogeneous group of neoplastic proliferations showing different clinical and prognostic features depending on the patient's clinico-pathological background including the morphology of the peri-tumoral mucosa, gastrin serum levels, presence or absence of antral G-cell hyperplasia, and presence or absence of MEN1 syndrome. In general, NET associated with hypergastrinemia show a better outcome than NET not associated with hypergastrinemia. G-NECs and MiNENs are aggressive neoplasms more frequently observed in males and associated with a dismal prognosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.32074/1591-951X-229DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8138695PMC
February 2021

Small Bowel Adenocarcinomas Featuring Special AT-Rich Sequence-Binding Protein 2 (SATB2) Expression and a Colorectal Cancer-Like Immunophenotype: A Potential Diagnostic Pitfall.

Cancers (Basel) 2020 Nov 19;12(11). Epub 2020 Nov 19.

Anatomic Pathology Unit, Department of Molecular Medicine, University of Pavia and Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo, 27100 Pavia, Lombardy, Italy.

Special AT-rich sequence-binding protein 2 (SATB2) is a transcription factor expressed by colonic cryptic epithelium and epithelial neoplasms of the lower gastrointestinal (GI) tract, as well as by small bowel adenocarcinomas (SBAs), though at a lower rate. Nevertheless, up to now, only small SBA series, often including a very limited number of Crohn's disease-associated SBAs (CrD-SBAs) and celiac disease-associated SBAs (CD-SBA), have been investigated for SATB2 expression. We evaluated the expression of SATB2 and other GI phenotypic markers (cytokeratin (CK) 7 and CK20, caudal type homeobox 2 (CDX2) and alpha-methylacyl-CoA racemase (AMACR)), as well as mismatch repair (MMR) proteins, in 100 SBAs, encompassing 34 CrD-SBAs, 28 CD-SBAs and 38 sporadic cases (Spo-SBAs). Any mutual association and correlation with other clinico-pathologic features, including patient prognosis, were searched. Twenty (20%) SATB2-positive SBAs (4 CrD-SBAs, 7 CD-SBAs and 9 Spo-SBAs) were identified. The prevalence of SATB2 positivity was lower in CrD-SBA (12%) in comparison with both CD-SBAs (25%) and Spo-SBAs (24%). Interestingly, six SBAs (two CD-SBAs and four Spo-SBAs) displayed a full colorectal carcinoma (CRC)-like immunoprofile (CK7-/CK20+/CDX2+/AMACR+/SATB2+); none of them was a CrD-SBA. No association between SATB2 expression and MMR status was observed. Although SATB2-positive SBA patients showed a more favorable outcome in comparison with SATB2-negative ones, the difference did not reach statistical significance. When cancers were stratified according to CK7/CK20 expression patterns, we found that CK7-/CK20- SBAs were enriched with MMR-deficient cases (71%) and patients with CK7-/CK20- or CK7-/CK20+ SBAs had a significantly better survival rate compared to those with CK7+/CK20- or CK7+/CK20+ cancers ( = 0.002). To conclude, we identified a small (6%) subset of SBAs featuring a full CRC-like immunoprofile, representing a potential diagnostic pitfall in attempts to identify the site of origin of neoplasms of unknown primary site. In contrast with data on colorectal carcinoma, SATB2 expression is not associated with MMR status in SBAs. CK patterns influence patient survival, as CK7-/CK20- cancers show better prognosis, a behavior possibly due to the high rate of MMR-deficient SBAs within this subgroup.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/cancers12113441DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7699330PMC
November 2020

New insights into the classification of gastric neuroendocrine tumours, expanding the spectrum of ECL-cell tumours related to hypergastrinaemia.

Histopathology 2020 12;77(6):862-864

Anatomical Pathology Unit, Department of Molecular Medicine, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/his.14226DOI Listing
December 2020

Prognostic Role of Mismatch Repair Status, Histotype and High-Risk Pathologic Features in Stage II Small Bowel Adenocarcinomas.

Ann Surg Oncol 2021 Feb 5;28(2):1167-1177. Epub 2020 Aug 5.

Unit of Pathology, Cervello Hospital, Palermo, Italy.

Background: Small bowel adenocarcinoma is a relatively rare cancer, often diagnosed in an advanced stage. In localized and resectable disease, surgery alone or in combination with adjuvant chemotherapy is the mainstay of treatment. In the recently published National Comprehensive Cancer Network Clinical Practice guidelines, criteria for selecting patients with stage II small bowel adenocarcinoma to receive adjuvant chemotherapy are provided, and they are mainly extrapolated from studies on colorectal cancer.

Patients And Methods: In the present study, we aimed to verify whether mismatch repair deficiency phenotype, high-risk pathologic features (including T4, positive resection margins and a low number of lymph nodes harvested), as well as tumor histologic subtype, were associated with cancer-specific survival in 66 stage II non-ampullary small bowel adenocarcinoma patients, collected through the Small Bowel Cancer Italian Consortium. A central histopathology review was performed. Mismatch repair deficiency was tested by immunohistochemistry for MLH1, MSH2, MSH6 and PMS2, and confirmed by polymerase chain reaction for microsatellite instability.

Results: We identified mismatch repair deficiency, glandular/medullary histologic subtype, and celiac disease as significant predictors of favorable cancer-specific survival using univariable analysis with retained significance in bivariable models adjusted for pT stage. Among the high-risk features, only T4 showed a significant association with an increased risk of death; however, its prognostic value was not independent of mismatch repair status.

Conclusions: Mismatch repair protein expression, histologic subtype, association with celiac disease, and, in the mismatch repair proficient subset only, T stage, may help identify patients who may benefit from adjuvant chemotherapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1245/s10434-020-08926-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7801310PMC
February 2021

Long Survival and Prolonged Remission after Surgery and Chemotherapy in a Metastatic Mismatch Repair Deficient Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Carcinoma with MLH1/PMS2 Immunodeficiency and Minimal Microsatellite Shift.

Endocr Pathol 2020 Dec;31(4):411-417

Institute of Pathology, Lausanne University Hospital and University of Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland.

Pancreatic neuroendocrine carcinomas (NECs) are rare and very aggressive neoplasms with dismal prognosis, especially when metastatic or with negative prognostic factors, such as vascular invasion. To the best of our knowledge, no case of pancreatic NEC with mismatch repair deficiency has been reported to date. We describe a 62-year-old patient who underwent pancreaticoduodenectomy for a NEC located in the pancreatic head, with peripancreatic lymph node metastases. Tumor necrosis was prominent and the Ki67 proliferative index was 60%. One year after the diagnosis, the patient experienced recurrence with a left supraclavicular lymph node metastasis, which was surgically removed, followed by standard cisplatin-etoposide chemotherapy. Neoplastic cells showed combined loss of expression of MLH1 and PMS2 in both primary tumor and lymph node metastasis. Microsatellite instability (MSI) test using a mononucleotide repeats pentaplex PCR (BAT-25, BAT-26, NR-21, NR-22, and NR-24) revealed minimal mononucleotide shifts showing deletion of less than 3 bp at NR-21, BAT-26, NR-24, and NR-22 loci. MLH1 methylation analysis revealed absence of the gene promoter methylation. BRAF and KRAS mutations were not detected. In gut, NECs' mismatch repair deficiency phenotype has been reported in about 10% of cases, and it represents an independent factor of more favorable outcome. Likewise, our patient is currently alive with a follow-up of more than 12 years after pancreaticoduodenectomy, by itself an unexpected finding for such an aggressive neoplasm.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12022-020-09622-5DOI Listing
December 2020

PD-L1 in small bowel adenocarcinoma is associated with etiology and tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes, in addition to microsatellite instability.

Mod Pathol 2020 07 17;33(7):1398-1409. Epub 2020 Feb 17.

Department of Internal Medicine, University of Pavia and Fondazione IRCCS San Matteo Hospital, Pavia, Italy.

Small bowel adenocarcinomas (SBAs) are often associated with poor prognosis and have limited therapeutic options. Programmed cell death protein-1 (PD-1)/programmed cell death ligand 1 (PD-L1) pathway blockade is an effective treatment in many microsatellite instability-high (MSI-H) solid tumors. We aimed at investigating PD-L1 and PD-1 expression in non-hereditary, non-ampullary SBAs, associated with celiac disease (CeD), Crohn's disease (CrD), or sporadic, recruited through the Small Bowel Cancer Italian Consortium. We assessed PD-L1 and PD-1 by immunohistochemistry in a series of 121 surgically resected SBAs, including 34 CeD-SBAs, 49 CrD-SBAs, and 38 sporadic SBAs. PD-L1 and PD-1 expression was correlated with several clinico-pathological features, such as the etiology, microsatellite instability status, and tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte (TIL) density. The prevalence of PD-L1 positivity according to combined positive score (CPS) was 26% in the whole cohort of SBAs, with significantly (p = 0.001) higher percentage (35%) in both CeD-SBAs and CrD-SBAs in comparison with sporadic SBAs (5%). CPS ≥ 1 SBAs were significantly (p = 0.013) more frequent in MSI-H cases (41%) than in non-MSI-H ones (18%); however, 15 CPS ≥ 1 microsatellite stable SBAs were also identified. CPS ≥ 1 SBAs showed higher TIL and PD-1 immune cell density, more frequently medullary histotype, as well as a better outcome in comparison with CPS < 1 cases. This study demonstrates an increased proportion of PD-L1 cases in both CeD-SBAs and CrD-SBAs in comparison with sporadic SBAs. In addition, the identification of a subset of PD-L1 microsatellite stable SBAs supports the need to ascertain additional biomarkers of response to immune checkpoint inhibitors along with MSI-H.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41379-020-0497-0DOI Listing
July 2020

CagA Effector Protein in -Infected Human Gastric Epithelium in Vivo: From Bacterial Core and Adhesion/Injection Clusters to Host Cell Proteasome-Rich Cytosol.

Toxins (Basel) 2019 10 25;11(11). Epub 2019 Oct 25.

Department of Molecular Medicine, University of Pavia, 27100 Pavia, Italy.

A key role in the carcinogenic action of is played by the effector protein CagA, the first identified oncoprotein of the bacterial world. However, the present knowledge in regard to the bacterial injection of CagA into epithelial cells (through a type IV secretion system) and its intracellular fate is based primarily on experimental studies in vitro. Our study was aimed to investigate, in -infected human gastric epithelium, CagA delivery and intracellular distribution in order to identify any in vivo counterpart of the cell injection mechanism described in vitro and any intracellular cytoplasmic site of preferential CagA distribution, thus shedding light on the natural history of CagA in vivo. By transmission electron microscopy and ultrastructural immunocytochemistry (which combine precise molecule localization with detailed analysis of bacterial-host cell interaction and epithelial cell ultrastructure), we investigated endoscopic biopsies of gastric antrum from -infected dyspeptic patients. Our findings provide support for CagA direct injection into gastric epithelial cells at bacterial adhesion sites located on the lateral plasma membrane and for its cytosolic intracellular distribution with selective concentration inside peculiar proteasome-rich areas, which might be site not only of CagA degradation but also of CagA-promoted crucial events in gastric carcinogenesis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/toxins11110618DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6891489PMC
October 2019

Small-bowel carcinomas associated with celiac disease: transcriptomic profiling shows predominance of microsatellite instability-immune and mesenchymal subtypes.

Virchows Arch 2020 May 6;476(5):711-723. Epub 2019 Nov 6.

Unit of Pathology, Dept. of Medicine and Surgery and Research Center for the Study of Hereditary and Familial Tumors, University of Insubria, Via Rossi 9, 21100, Varese, Italy.

Celiac disease (CD) is a risk factor for developing small-bowel carcinoma with a 14-fold higher risk compared with general population. As small-bowel carcinomas associated with CD (CD-SBCs) are extremely rare, very few molecular data are available about their pathogenesis, and information about their transcriptomic profiling is lacking. We generated RNA-seq data on 13 CD-SBCs, taken from the largest well-characterized series published so far, collected by the Small Bowel Cancer Italian Consortium, and compared the tumor transcriptional signatures with the four Consensus Molecular Subtypes (CMS) of colorectal carcinoma by applying the "CMS classifier." CpG Island Methylator Phenotype (CIMP) was evaluated using methylation-sensitive multiple ligation-dependent probe amplification. Up to 12 of 13 cancers fell within the two main subtypes exhibiting high immune and inflammatory signatures, i.e., subtypes 1 and 4. The first and predominant subset was commonly microsatellite unstable, and exhibited CIMP and high CD3+ and CD8+ T cell infiltration. Moreover, it showed increased expression of genes associated with T helper 1 and natural killer cell infiltration, as well as upregulation of apoptosis, cell cycle progression, and proteasome pathways. By contrast, cancers falling in subtype 4 showed prominent transforming growth factor-β activation and were characterized by complement-associated inflammation, matrix remodeling, cancer-associated stroma production, and angiogenesis. Parallel histologic and histochemical analysis confirmed such tumor subtyping. In conclusion, two molecular subtypes have been consistently identified in our series of CD-SBCs, a microsatellite instability-immune and a mesenchymal subtype, the former likely associated with an indolent and the latter with a worse tumor behavior.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00428-019-02675-wDOI Listing
May 2020

Separation of Low- Versus High-grade Crohn's Disease-associated Small Bowel Carcinomas is Improved by Invasive Front Prognostic Marker Analysis.

J Crohns Colitis 2020 Mar;14(3):295-302

IBD, San Filippo Neri Hospital, Rome, Italy.

Background And Aims: Crohn's disease-associated small bowel carcinoma is a rare event, usually reported to have a severe prognosis. However, in previous investigations we have found a minority of cases displaying a relatively favourable behaviour, thus outlining the need to improve the histopathological prediction of Crohn's disease-associated small bowel carcinoma prognosis.

Methods: As in recent studies on colorectal cancer, a substantial improvement in prognostic evaluations has been provided by the histological analysis of the tumour invasive front; we therefore systematically analysed the tumour budding and poorly differentiated clusters in the invasive front of 47 Crohn's disease-associated small bowel carcinomas collected through the Small Bowel Cancer Italian Consortium.

Results: Both tumour budding and poorly differentiated cluster analyses proved highly effective in prognostic evaluation of Crohn's disease-associated small bowel carcinomas. In addition, they retained prognostic value when combined with two other parameters, i.e. glandular histology and stage I/II, both known to predict a relatively favourable small bowel carcinoma behaviour. In particular, association of tumour budding and poorly differentiated clusters in a combined invasive front score allowed identification of a minor subset of cancers [12/47, 25%] characterised by combined invasive front low grade coupled with a glandular histology and a low stage [I or II] and showing no cancer-related death during a median follow-up of 73.5 months.

Conclusions: The improved distinction of lower- from higher-grade Crohn's disease-associated small bowel carcinomas provided by invasive front analysis should be of potential help in choosing appropriate therapy for these rare and frequently ominous neoplasms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ecco-jcc/jjz140DOI Listing
March 2020

Neuroendocrine Tumors (NETs) of the Minor Papilla/Ampulla: Analysis of 16 Cases Underlines Homology With Major Ampulla NETs and Differences From Extra-Ampullary Duodenal NETs.

Am J Surg Pathol 2019 06;43(6):725-736

Department of Molecular Medicine, Unit of Anatomic Pathology, University of Pavia.

Neuroendocrine tumors (NETs) of the minor papilla/ampulla (MIPA) are rare and poorly studied. Only individual case reports and no comprehensive analysis are available from the literature. We collected 16 MIPA NETs and investigated their clinicopathologic and immunohistochemical features, including markers such as somatostatin, pancreatic polypeptide, gastrin, serotonin, MUC1, cytokeratin 7, and somatostatin receptors type 2A and 5. The median age at diagnosis was 57.5 years, and the female-to-male ratio was 2.2:1. The median NET size was 1.45 cm, and most (94%) were low-grade (G1) tumors. Similarly to what was observed in the major ampulla, 3 histotypes were found: (i) ampullary-type somatostatin-producing tumors (ASTs, 10 cases), characterized by somatostatin expression in most tumor cells, focal-to-extensive tubulo-acinar structures, often with psammoma bodies, MUC1 reactivity, and no or rare membranous reactivity for somatostatin receptor type 2A; (ii) gangliocytic paragangliomas (3 cases), characterized by the coexistence of 3 tumor cell types: epithelioid, often reactive for pancreatic polypeptide, ganglion-like cells, and S100 reactive sustentacular/stromal cells; and (iii) ordinary nonfunctioning NETs (3 cases), resembling those more commonly observed in the extra-ampullary duodenum. Comparable histotypes could also be recognized among the 30 MIPA NETs from the literature. No NET-related patient death among MIPA cases was observed during a median follow-up of 38 months; however, MIPA ASTs showed lymph node metastases and invasion of the duodenal muscularis propria or beyond in 44% and 40% of cases, respectively. In conclusion, MIPA NETs closely resemble tumors arising in the major ampulla, with predominance of ASTs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/PAS.0000000000001234DOI Listing
June 2019

Small Bowel Carcinomas Associated with Immune-Mediated Intestinal Disorders: The Current Knowledge.

Cancers (Basel) 2018 Dec 29;11(1). Epub 2018 Dec 29.

First Department of Internal Medicine, University of Pavia and Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo, 27100 Pavia, Italy.

Small bowel carcinomas (SBC) are uncommon neoplasms, whose predisposing conditions include hereditary syndromes and immune-mediated intestinal disorders including coeliac disease (CD) and Crohn's disease (CrD). Although both CD-associated SBC (CD-SBC) and CrD-associated SBC (CrD-SBC) arise from an inflammatory background, they differ substantially in tumour cell phenotype, frequency of microsatellite instability and nuclear β-catenin expression, as well as in prognosis. For these patients, high tumour-infiltrating lymphocyte density and glandular/medullary histotype represent independent positive prognostic factors. Dysplasia adjacent to SBC is rare and characterized by intestinal phenotype and nuclear β-catenin in CD, while it is frequent and typified by gastro-pancreatobiliary marker expression and preserved membranous β-catenin in CrD. Recent evidence suggests that Epstein-Barr virus-positive dysplasia and SBC, albeit exceptional, do exist and are associated with CrD. In this review, we summarize the novel pathological and molecular insights of clinical and therapeutic interest to guide the care of CD-SBC and CrD-SBC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/cancers11010031DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6356995PMC
December 2018

Competitive Testing of the WHO 2010 versus the WHO 2017 Grading of Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Neoplasms: Data from a Large International Cohort Study.

Neuroendocrinology 2018 9;107(4):375-386. Epub 2018 Oct 9.

Institute of Pathology, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland.

Background: The World Health Organization (WHO) and the American Joint Cancer Committee (AJCC) modified the grading of pancreatic neuroendocrine neoplasms from a three-tier (WHO-AJCC 2010) to a four-tier system by introducing the novel category of NET G3 (WHO-AJCC 2017).

Objectives: This study aims at validating the WHO-AJCC 2017 and identifying the most effective grading system.

Method: A total of 2,102 patients were enrolled; entry criteria were: (i) patient underwent surgery; (ii) at least 2 years of follow-up; (iii) observation time up to 2015. Data from 34 variables were collected; grading was assessed and compared for efficacy by statistical means including Kaplan-Meier method, Cox regression analysis, Harrell's C statistics, and Royston's explained variation in univariable and multivariable analyses.

Results: In descriptive analysis, the two grading systems demonstrated statistically significant differences for the major category sex but not for age groups. In Cox regression analysis, both grading systems showed statistically significant differences between grades for OS and EFS; however, no statistically significant difference was observed between the two G3 classes of WHO-AJCC 2017. In multivariable analysis for the two models fitted to compare efficacy, the two grading systems performed equally well with substantially similar optimal discrimination and well-explained variation for both OS and EFS. The WHO-AJCC 2017 grading system retained statistically significant difference between the two G3 classes for OS but not for EFS.

Conclusions: The WHO-AJCC 2017 grading system is at least equally performing as the WHO-AJCC 2010 but allows the successful identification of the most aggressive PanNET subgroup. Grading is confirmed as probably the most powerful tool for predicting patient survival.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000494355DOI Listing
September 2019

Proteasome-Rich PaCS as an Oncofetal UPS Structure Handling Cytosolic Polyubiquitinated Proteins. In Vivo Occurrence, in Vitro Induction, and Biological Role.

Int J Mol Sci 2018 Sep 14;19(9). Epub 2018 Sep 14.

Department of Molecular Medicine, University of Pavia, 27100 Pavia, Italy.

In this article, we outline and discuss available information on the cellular site and mechanism of proteasome interaction with cytosolic polyubiquitinated proteins and heat-shock molecules. The particulate cytoplasmic structure (PaCS) formed by barrel-like particles, closely reproducing in vivo the high-resolution structure of 26S proteasome as isolated in vitro, has been detected in a variety of fetal and neoplastic cells, from living tissue or cultured cell lines. Specific trophic factors and interleukins were found to induce PaCS during in vitro differentiation of dendritic, natural killer (NK), or megakaryoblastic cells, apparently through activation of the MAPK-ERK pathway. Direct interaction of CagA bacterial oncoprotein with proteasome was shown inside the PaCSs of a -infected gastric epithelium, a finding suggesting a role for PaCS in CagA-mediated gastric carcinogenesis. PaCS dissolution and autophagy were seen after withdrawal of inducing factors. PaCS-filled cell blebs and ectosomes were found in some cells and may represent a potential intercellular discharge and transport system of polyubiquitinated antigenic proteins. PaCS differs substantially from the inclusion bodies, sequestosomes, and aggresomes reported in proteinopathies like Huntington or Parkinson diseases, which usually lack PaCS. The latter seems more linked to conditions of increased cell proliferation/differentiation, implying an increased functional demand to the ubiquitin⁻proteasome system.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms19092767DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6164709PMC
September 2018

Grade 3 Neuroendocrine Tumor (G3 NET) in a Background of Multiple Serotonin Cell Neoplasms of the Ileum Associated with Carcinoid Syndrome and Aggressive Behavior.

Endocr Pathol 2018 Dec;29(4):369-373

Anatomic Pathology Unit, Department of Molecular Medicine, University of Pavia and Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo, Via Forlanini 14, 27100, Pavia, Italia.

Grade 3 well-differentiated neuroendocrine tumors (G3 NETs) have been characterized in the pancreas and stomach and distinguished from low-to-intermediate grade (G1-G2) NETs, as well as from highly malignant, poorly differentiated neuroendocrine carcinomas (NECs). Up to now, no G3 NET has been thoroughly described in the distal small intestine. We herein report a case of a 61-year-old man presenting with carcinoid syndrome. The surgical specimen showed, in a background of small G1 ileal NETs, a larger, grade 3 NET, which retained the nesting pattern and the expression of serotonin, chromogranin-A, and type 2A somatostatin receptors, typical of well-differentiated jejuno-ileal NETs. The patient had G3 NET metastasis to the liver and he died 14 months after surgery, due to deterioration in his clinical conditions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12022-018-9541-8DOI Listing
December 2018

Prognostic Evaluations Tailored to Specific Gastric Neuroendocrine Neoplasms: Analysis Of 200 Cases with Extended Follow-Up.

Neuroendocrinology 2018 12;107(2):114-126. Epub 2018 Jun 12.

Department of Molecular Medicine, University of Pavia and Pathology Unit, IRCCS San Matteo Hospital, Pavia, Italy.

Background: Gastric neuroendocrine neoplasms (NENs) are very heterogeneous, ranging from mostly indolent, atrophic gastritis-associated, type I neuroendocrine tumors (NETs), through highly malignant, poorly differentiated neuroendocrine carcinomas (pdNECs), to sporadic type III NETs with intermediate prognosis, and various rare tumor types. Histologic differentiation, proliferative grade, size, level of gastric wall invasion, and local or distant metastases are used as prognostic markers. However, their value remains to be tailored to specific gastric NENs.

Methods: Series of type I NETs (n = 123 cases), type III NETs (n = 34 cases), and pdNECs (n = 43 cases) were retrospectively collected from four pathology centers specializing in endocrine pathology. All cases were characterized clinically and histopathologically. During follow-up (median 93 months) data were recorded to assess disease-specific patient survival.

Results: Type I NETs, type III NETs, and pdNECs differed markedly in terms of tumor size, grade, invasive and metastatic power, as well as patient outcome. Size was used to stratify type I NETs into subgroups with significantly different invasive and metastatic behavior. All 70 type I NETs < 0.5 cm (micro-NETs) were uneventful. Ki67-based grading proved efficient for the prognostic stratification of type III NETs; however, grade 2 (G2) was not associated with tumor behavior in type I NETs. Although G3 NETs (2 type I and 9 type III) had a very poor prognosis, it was found that patient survival was longer with type III G3 NETs compared to pdNECs.

Conclusions: Given the marked, tumor type-related behavior differences, evaluation of gastric NEN prognostic parameters should be tailored to the type of neoplastic disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000489902DOI Listing
January 2019

Ki67 proliferative index of the neuroendocrine component drives MANEC prognosis.

Endocr Relat Cancer 2018 05 28;25(5):583-593. Epub 2018 Mar 28.

Department of Medicine and Surgery, University of Insubria, Varese, Italy.

Mixed adenoneuroendocrine carcinomas (MANECs) are composed of a poorly differentiated neuroendocrine carcinoma (NEC) and a non-neuroendocrine (non-NEC) neoplastic epithelial component, each representing at least 30% of the tumor. At present, prognostic factors for MANECs remain largely unexplored. We investigated the clinical-pathologic features of a large multicenter series of digestive system MANECs. Surgical specimens of 200 MANEC candidates were centrally reviewed; diagnosis was confirmed in 160 cases. While morphology, proliferation (mitotic count (MC), Ki67 index) and immunophenotype (p53, SSTR2a, beta-Catenin, Bcl-2, p16, Rb1, ALDH, mismatch repair proteins and CD117) were investigated separately in both components, genomic (, , ) alterations were searched for on the entire tumor. Data were correlated with overall survival (OS). MANEC sites were: 92 colorectal, 44 gastroesophageal and 24 pancreatobiliary. Median OS was 13.2 months. After adjustment for primary site, Ki67 index of the NEC component (but not of the non-NEC component) was the most powerful prognostic marker. At multivariable analysis, patients with Ki67 ≥ 55% had an 8-fold risk of death (hazard ratio (HR) 7.83; 95% confidence interval (CI) 4.17-14.7;  < 0.0001) and a median OS of 12.2 months compared to those with Ki67 < 55% (median OS 40.5 months). MC (HR 1.51; 95% CI 1.03-2.20,  = 0.04) was a weaker prognostic index. Colorectal primary site (HR 1.60; 95% CI 1.11-2.32;  = 0.01) was significantly associated with poorer survival. No single immunomarker, in either component, was statistically significant. This retrospective analysis of a large series of digestive system MANECs, showed that the NEC component, particularly its Ki67 index, was the main prognostic driver.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1530/ERC-17-0557DOI Listing
May 2018

Natural history of Helicobacter pylori VacA toxin in human gastric epithelium in vivo: vacuoles and beyond.

Sci Rep 2017 11 6;7(1):14526. Epub 2017 Nov 6.

Department of Molecular Medicine, Pathologic Anatomy and Human Physiology Units, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy.

Uptake, intracellular trafficking and pathologic effects of VacA toxin from Helicobacter pylori have been widely investigated in vitro. However, no systematic analysis investigated VacA intracellular distribution and fate in H. pylori-infected human gastric epithelium in vivo, using ultrastructural immunocytochemistry that combines precise toxin localization with analysis of the overall cell ultrastructure and intercompartimental/interorganellar relationships. By immunogold procedure, in this study we investigated gastric biopsies taken from dyspeptic patients to characterize the overall toxin's journey inside human gastric epithelial cells in vivo. Endocytic pits were found to take up VacA at sites of bacterial adhesion, leading to a population of peripheral endosomes, which in deeper (juxtanuclear) cytoplasm enlarged and fused each other to form large VacA-containing vacuoles (VCVs). These directly opened into endoplasmic reticulum (ER) cisternae, which in turn enveloped mitochondria and contacted the Golgi apparatus. In all such organelles we found toxin molecules, often coupled with structural damage. These findings suggest direct toxin transfer from VCVs to other target organelles such as ER/Golgi and mitochondria. VacA-induced cytotoxic changes were associated with the appearance of auto(phago)lysosomes containing VacA, polyubiquitinated proteins, p62/SQSTM1 protein, cathepsin D, damaged mitochondria and bacterial remnants, thus leading to persistent cell accumulation of degradative products.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-15204-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5673961PMC
November 2017

Helicobacter pylori Employs a Unique Basolateral Type IV Secretion Mechanism for CagA Delivery.

Cell Host Microbe 2017 Oct;22(4):552-560.e5

Department of Biology, Division of Microbiology, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Erlangen, Germany. Electronic address:

The Helicobacter pylori (Hp) type IV secretion system (T4SS) forms needle-like pili, whose binding to the integrin-β receptor results in injection of the CagA oncoprotein. However, the apical surface of epithelial cells is exposed to Hp, whereas integrins are basolateral receptors. Hence, the mechanism of CagA delivery into polarized gastric epithelial cells remains enigmatic. Here, we demonstrate that T4SS pilus formation during infection of polarized cells occurs predominantly at basolateral membranes, and not at apical sites. Hp accomplishes this by secreting another bacterial protein, the serine protease HtrA, which opens cell-to-cell junctions through cleaving epithelial junctional proteins including occludin, claudin-8, and E-cadherin. Using a genetic system expressing a peptide inhibitor, we demonstrate that HtrA activity is necessary for paracellular transmigration of Hp across polarized cell monolayers to reach basolateral membranes and inject CagA. The contribution of this unique signaling cascade to Hp pathogenesis is discussed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chom.2017.09.005DOI Listing
October 2017

Small bowel carcinomas in celiac or Crohn's disease: distinctive histophenotypic, molecular and histogenetic patterns.

Mod Pathol 2017 10 30;30(10):1453-1466. Epub 2017 Jun 30.

Department of Molecular Medicine, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy.

Non-familial small bowel carcinomas are relatively rare and have a poor prognosis. Two small bowel carcinoma subsets may arise in distinct immune-inflammatory diseases (celiac disease and Crohn's disease) and have been recently suggested to differ in prognosis, celiac disease-associated carcinoma cases showing a better outcome, possibly due to their higher DNA microsatellite instability and tumor-infiltrating T lymphocytes. In this study, we investigated the histological structure (glandular vs diffuse/poorly cohesive, mixed or solid), cell phenotype (intestinal vs gastric/pancreatobiliary duct type) and Wnt signaling activation (β-catenin and/or SOX-9 nuclear expression) in a series of 26 celiac disease-associated small bowel carcinoma, 25 Crohn's disease-associated small bowel carcinoma and 25 sporadic small bowel carcinoma cases, searching for new prognostic parameters. In addition, non-tumor mucosa of celiac and Crohn's disease patients was investigated for epithelial precursor changes (hyperplastic, metaplastic or dysplastic) to help clarify carcinoma histogenesis. When compared with non-glandular structure and non-intestinal phenotype, both glandular structure and intestinal phenotype were associated with a more favorable outcome at univariable or stage- and microsatellite instability/tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte-inclusive multivariable analysis. The prognostic power of histological structure was independent of the clinical groups while the non-intestinal phenotype, associated with poor outcome, was dominant among Crohn's disease-associated carcinoma. Both nuclear β-catenin and SOX-9 were preferably expressed among celiac disease-associated carcinomas; however, they were devoid, per se, of prognostic value. We obtained findings supporting an origin of celiac disease-associated carcinoma in SOX-9-positive immature hyperplastic crypts, partly through flat β-catenin-positive dysplasia, and of Crohn's disease-associated carcinoma in a metaplastic (gastric and/or pancreatobiliary-type) mucosa, often through dysplastic polypoid growths of metaplastic phenotype. In conclusion, despite their common origin in a chronically inflamed mucosa, celiac disease-associated and Crohn's disease-associated small bowel carcinomas differ substantially in histological structure, phenotype, microsatellite instability/tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte status, Wnt pathway activation, mucosal precursor lesions and prognosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/modpathol.2017.40DOI Listing
October 2017

Different Polyubiquitinated Bodies in Human Dendritic Cells: IL-4 Causes PaCS During Differentiation while LPS or IFNα Induces DALIS During Maturation.

Sci Rep 2017 05 12;7(1):1844. Epub 2017 May 12.

Department of Molecular Medicine, Pathologic Anatomy Unit, University of Pavia, Via Forlanini 16, 27100, Pavia, Italy.

Two types of polyubiquitin-reactive cytoplasmic bodies, particulate cytoplasmic structures (PaCS) and dendritic cell (DC) aggresome-like induced structures (DALIS), were analyzed by electron microscopy, immunocytochemistry, immunoblotting, and flow cytometry in DC obtained from human blood monocytes incubated with GM-CSF plus IL-4 (IL4-DC), GM-CSF plus IFNα (IFN-DC), or GM-CSF alone (GM-DC), with or without LPS maturation. PaCS developed as monomorphic aggregates of proteasome-reactive barrel-like particles only in ribosomes-rich cytoplasmic areas of differentiating IL4-DC. In contrast, DALIS formed as vesicular bodies storing K63-linked ubiquitinated proteins by coalescence of increased endosomal structures, in IFN-DC or after LPS maturation of GM-DC. DALIS-forming cells showed incomplete morphological and functional DC-type differentiation when compared to PaCS-forming IL4-DC. PaCS and DALIS may have different function as well as different origin and cytochemistry. DALIS may be a transient accumulation site of potentially antigenic polyubiquitinated proteins during their processing and presentation. PaCS are found under physiologic or pathologic conditions associated with increased/deranged protein synthesis and increased ubiquitin-proteasome activity. Given its high heat-shock protein content PaCS may work as a quality control structure for newly synthesized, cytosolic proteins. This comparative analysis suggests that PaCS and DALIS have distinctive roles in DC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-02090-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5431999PMC
May 2017

Small Bowel Carcinomas in Coeliac or Crohn's Disease: Clinico-pathological, Molecular, and Prognostic Features. A Study From the Small Bowel Cancer Italian Consortium.

J Crohns Colitis 2017 Aug;11(8):942-953

Pathology Section, Spedali Civili Hospital, Brescia, Italy.

Background And Aims: An increased risk of small bowel carcinoma [SBC] has been reported in coeliac disease [CD] and Crohn's disease [CrD]. We explored clinico-pathological, molecular, and prognostic features of CD-associated SBC [CD-SBC] and CrD-associated SBC [CrD-SBC] in comparison with sporadic SBC [spo-SBC].

Methods: A total of 76 patients undergoing surgical resection for non-familial SBC [26 CD-SBC, 25 CrD-SBC, 25 spo-SBC] were retrospectively enrolled to investigate patients' survival and histological and molecular features including microsatellite instability [MSI] and KRAS/NRAS, BRAF, PIK3CA, TP53, HER2 gene alterations.

Results: CD-SBC showed a significantly better sex-, age-, and stage-adjusted overall and cancer-specific survival than CrD-SBC, whereas no significant difference was found between spo-SBC and either CD-SBC or CrD-SBC. CD-SBC exhibited a significantly higher rate of MSI and median tumour-infiltrating lymphocytes [TIL] than CrD-SBC and spo-SBC. Among the whole SBC series, both MSI─which was the result of MLH1 promoter methylation in all but one cases─and high TIL density were associated with improved survival at univariable and stage-inclusive multivariable analysis. However, only TILs retained prognostic power when clinical subgroups were added to the multivariable model. KRAS mutation and HER2 amplification were detected in 30% and 7% of cases, respectively, without prognostic implications.

Conclusions: In comparison with CrD-SBC, CD-SBC patients harbour MSI and high TILs more frequently and show better outcome. This seems mainly due to their higher TIL density, which at multivariable analysis showed an independent prognostic value. MSI/TIL status, KRAS mutations and HER2 amplification might help in stratifying patients for targeted anti-cancer therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ecco-jcc/jjx031DOI Listing
August 2017

Small bowel Epstein-Barr virus-positive lympho-epithelioma-like carcinoma in Crohn's disease.

Histopathology 2017 04 18;70(5):837-839. Epub 2017 Jan 18.

Department of Internal Medicine, San Matteo Hospital, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/his.13133DOI Listing
April 2017

The Clinicopathologic Heterogeneity of Grade 3 Gastroenteropancreatic Neuroendocrine Neoplasms: Morphological Differentiation and Proliferation Identify Different Prognostic Categories.

Neuroendocrinology 2017 5;104(1):85-93. Epub 2016 Mar 5.

Anatomic Pathology, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, IRCCS Foundation National Cancer Institute, Milan, Italy.

Background/aims: Gastroenteropancreatic (GEP) neuroendocrine carcinomas (NECs) are defined as neuroendocrine neoplasms (NENs) with a Ki-67 index >20% according to the 2010 WHO classification. Some reports suggest that this category is heterogeneous. We retrospectively studied a series of 136 patients affected by grade 3 GEP-NECs with the aim to clarify the prognostic role of tumor morphological differentiation, proliferation, defect in mismatch repair proteins (MMRd), CD117 expression, and site of origin. The primary endpoint was the correlation between these parameters and the overall survival (OS).

Methods: Univariate and multivariable Cox proportional hazards regression analyses were used to assess the prognostic significance of various clinical and histopathologic features.

Results: With a median follow-up of 81 months, the median OS was 12.9 months. At multivariate analysis, morphological differentiation, Ki-67 index, MMRd, stage, and CD117 expression were independent prognostic markers in NECs. Three different prognostic categories of NECs were identified according to the degree of morphologic differentiation (well vs. poorly differentiated) and Ki-67 index (<55% vs. ≥55%). On this basis, median OS was 43.6 months in well-differentiated neoplasms with a Ki-67 index 20-55% (named type A), 24.5 months in poorly differentiated neoplasms with a Ki-67 index 20-55% (type B), and 5.3 months (p < 0.0001) in poorly differentiated neoplasms with a Ki-67 index ≥55% (type C).

Conclusions: The present study suggests that GEP-NECs represent a heterogeneous group of neoplasms which can be better classified in different prognostic categories using both tumor morphology and Ki-67 index.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000445165DOI Listing
May 2017

Abundant PD-L1 expression in Epstein-Barr Virus-infected gastric cancers.

Oncotarget 2016 May;7(22):32925-32

Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Gastric cancer (GC) is a deadly disease with limited treatment options. Recent studies with PD-1 inhibition have shown promising results in GC, but key questions remain regarding which GC subclass may respond best. In other cancers, expression of the PD-1 ligand PD-L1 has been shown to identify cancers with greater likelihood of response to PD-1 blockade. We here show with immunohistochemistry that Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV)+ GCs (n = 32) have robust PD-L1 expression not seen in other GCs. In EBV+ GC, we observed PD-L1 staining in tumor cells in 50% (16/32) and immune cells in 94% (30/32) of cases. Among EBV-negative GCs, PD-L1 expression within tumors cells was observed only in cases with microsatellite instability (MSI), although 35% of EBV-/MSS GCs possessed PD-L1 expression of inflammatory cells. Moreover, distinct classes of GC showed different patterns of PD-L1+ immune cell infiltrations. In both EBV+ and MSI tumors, PD-L1+ inflammatory cells were observed to infiltrate the tumor. By contrast, such cells remained at the tumor border of EBV-/MSS GCs. Consistent with these findings, we utilized gene expression profiling of GCs from The Cancer Genome Atlas study to demonstrate that an interferon-γ driven gene signature, an additional proposed marker of sensitivity to PD-1 therapy, were enriched in EBV+ and MSI GC. These data suggest that patients with EBV+ and MSI GC may have greater likelihood of response to PD-1 blockade and that EBV and MSI status should be evaluated as variables in clinical trials of these emerging inhibitors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.9076DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5078063PMC
May 2016

Four Neuroendocrine Tumor Types and Neuroendocrine Carcinoma of the Duodenum: Analysis of 203 Cases.

Neuroendocrinology 2017 25;104(2):112-125. Epub 2016 Feb 25.

Division of Pathology, Department of Molecular Medicine, University of Pavia and Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo, Pavia, Italy.

Background: Several types of neuroendocrine neoplasms (NENs) have been described in the duodenal tract, from low-grade tumors (NETs) to high-grade neuroendocrine carcinomas (NECs). A comprehensive analysis of histology, hormonal profile and prognostic parameters of a sufficiently large duodenal NEN series to cover all main kinds of neoplasms is however lacking.

Methods: We collected a retrospective series of 203 duodenal wall and ampullary region NENs, from six specialized endocrine pathology centers. All were characterized histopathologically and histochemically, and 190 were followed for a median of 9 years.

Results: Twenty-seven poorly differentiated NECs, mostly from the ampullary region, were identified and shown to lead to patient demise in a median of 10 months. Among 176 NETs, four subtypes were characterized, including 20 gastrinomas, 37 ampullary-type somatostatin-producing NETs (ASTs), 12 gangliocytic paragangliomas (GPs) and 106 nonfunctioning NETs (nfNETs). ASTs and GPs were mostly localized in the ampullary/periampullary region, while gastrinomas and nfNETs were mainly from the proximal duodenum. ASTs and gastrinomas showed high rates of local infiltration (especially lymphoinvasion and deep duodenal wall/pancreatic tissue invasion) and lymph node metastasis, while nfNETs had significantly lower and more size-dependent local invasive potential. Disease-specific survival differed significantly between NETs and NECs, though not among NET subtypes. NET cases with distant metastases (n = 23) were significantly associated with larger size, higher proliferative grade, lymphovascular invasion, deep invasion and local lymph node metastasis.

Conclusion: Our careful analysis of a large series of duodenal NENs identified five histologically and prognostically different histotypes of potential clinical relevance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000444803DOI Listing
May 2017

Particulate cytoplasmic structures with high concentration of ubiquitin-proteasome accumulate in myeloid neoplasms.

J Hematol Oncol 2015 Jun 18;8:71. Epub 2015 Jun 18.

Department of Molecular Medicine, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy.

Background: Increased plasma levels of proteasome have been associated with various neoplasms, especially myeloid malignancies. Little is known of the cellular origin and release mechanisms of such proteasome. We recently identified and characterized a novel particulate cytoplasmic structure (PaCS) showing selective accumulation of ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS) components. PaCSs have been reported in some epithelial neoplasms and in two genetic disorders characterized by hematopoietic cell dysplasia and increased risk of leukemia. However, no information is available about PaCSs in hematopoietic neoplasms.

Methods: PaCSs were investigated by ultrastructural, immunogold, and immunofluorescence analysis of bone marrow (BM) biopsies and peripheral blood (PB) cell preparations of 33 consecutive, untreated, or relapsed patients affected by different hematopoietic neoplasms. BM and PB samples from individuals with non-neoplastic BM or healthy donors were studied as controls. Granulocytes and platelet proteasome content was measured by immunoblotting and plasma proteasome levels by ELISA.

Results: PaCSs with typical, selective immunoreactivity for polyubiquitinated proteins and proteasome were widespread in granulocytic cells, megakaryocytes, and platelets of patients with myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPN). In acute myeloid leukemia and myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), PaCSs were only occasionally detected in blast cells and were found consistently in cells showing granulocytic and megakaryocytic maturation. Conversely, PaCSs were poorly represented or absent in non-neoplastic hematopoietic tissue or lymphoid neoplasms. In MPN granulocytes and platelets, the presence of PaCSs was associated with increased amounts of proteasome in cell lysates. PaCSs were often localized in cytoplasmic blebs generating PaCSs-filled plasma membrane vesicles observable in the BM intercellular space. In MPN and MDS, accumulation of PaCSs was associated with significant increase in plasma proteasome. Immunogold analysis showed that PaCSs of myeloid neoplasia selectively concentrated the chaperone proteins Hsp40, Hsp70, and Hsp90.

Conclusions: PaCSs accumulate in cells of myeloid neoplasms in a lineage- and maturation-restricted manner; in particular, they are widespread in granulocytic and megakaryocytic lineages of MPN patients. PaCSs development was associated with excess accumulation of polyubiquitinated proteins, proteasome, and chaperone molecules, indicating impairment of the UPS-dependent protein homeostasis and a possible link with Hsp90-related leukemogenesis. A mechanism of PaCSs discharge by leukemic cells could contribute to increased plasma proteasome of MPN and MDS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13045-015-0169-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4473848PMC
June 2015
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