HPV-associated neuroendocrine carcinoma of the oropharynx: a rare new entity with potentially aggressive clinical behavior.
ABSTRACT High-grade neuroendocrine carcinoma of the head and neck is an aggressive neoplasm which rarely arises in the oropharynx. Here we report a series of 8 oropharyngeal neuroendocrine carcinomas associated with both human papillomavirus (HPV) infection and tobacco exposure. The tumor occurred predominantly in male patients (6 of 8) at a mean age of 59 years. Histologically, these cases were all classified as poorly differentiated neuroendocrine carcinoma (small cell carcinoma) with high mitotic activity [mean 53.3 mitoses per 10 HPF], necrosis, high nuclear-to-cytoplasmic ratio, and nuclear molding. One case also exhibited a moderately differentiated component, and one other case had a component of squamous cell carcinoma with basaloid features. Neuroendocrine differentiation was confirmed by immunoreactivity for synaptophysin and/or chromogranin A in all cases. P63 staining was negative, except in 1 case. Seven of the 8 cases showed strong and diffuse p16 expression, a surrogate marker for high-risk HPV infection. HPV infection was confirmed in 6 of these 7 cases by HPV in situ hybridization and/or polymerase chain reaction analysis. HPV subtypes 16, 18, and 33 were identified in 1 case each by polymerase chain reaction testing. Six of the 7 patients for whom clinical history was available presented with advanced disease (4 with regional lymph node metastases, 1 with distant metastases, and 1 with distant and locoregional metastases). Disease recurred in 5 of the 6 patients with available clinical follow-up, with 3 developing distant metastases to brain, bones, lung, pleura, adrenal glands, and pancreas. These 3 cases were all from the HPV-positive group. In summary, neuroendocrine carcinoma of the oropharynx represents a rare novel HPV-associated entity with high-grade histologic features and aggressive clinical behavior.
Article: HPV-associated head and neck cancer: molecular and nano-scale markers for prognosis and therapeutic stratification.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Over the last 10 years, it has become clear that patients with head and neck cancer can be stratified into two distinct subgroups on the basis of the etiology of their disease. Patients with human papillomavirus-related cancers have significantly better survival rates and may necessitate different therapeutic approaches than those with tobacco and/or alcohol related cancers. This review discusses the various biomarkers currently in use for identification of patients with HPV-positive cancers with a focus on the advantages and limitations of molecular and nano-scale markers.Sensors 01/2012; 12(4):5159-69. · 1.74 Impact Factor