Primary mucinous adenocarcinoma of the thymus: a case report and review of the literature.

Department of Pathology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX 75390-9073, USA.
Archives of pathology & laboratory medicine (Impact Factor: 2.88). 03/2006; 130(2):201-4. DOI: 10.1043/1543-2165(2006)130[201:PMAOTT]2.0.CO;2
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Primary thymic mucinous adenocarcinoma is extremely rare; to our knowledge, only 2 cases have been reported to date. We describe a third case of primary mucinous adenocarcinoma of the thymus in a 41-year-old man who presented with an anterior mediastinal mass with subsequent metastasis to the lung. The initial diagnosis was of metastatic mucinous adenocarcinoma, but extensive clinical workup of the patient failed to reveal a primary tumor elsewhere in the body. The specific identification of mucinous adenocarcinoma as a primary thymic neoplasm can be difficult or impossible. Morphologic and immunophenotypic similarities to mucinous adenocarcinomas of the gastrointestinal tract can pose diagnostic challenges for surgical pathologists, especially in small biopsy specimens.

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    ABSTRACT: Primary thymic mucinous adenocarcinoma is an extremely rare aggressive subtype of thymic carcinoma. With a review of literatures, only nine cases have been reported up to present. A 36-year-old woman was admitted for further evaluation and treatment of a mediastinal mass. The patient had no medical history of cancer. The clinicoradiological examination disclosed no tumor elsewhere. After the surgical excision of mediastinal mass, it was grossly a round semi-solid mass with mucin-filled cystic areas. Microscopically solid areas showed cords, small nests and dilated glands infiltrating the fibrotic parenchyma, while the cystic areas were lined by mucinous epithelium with tumor cells floating in extracellular-mucin pools. Some cystic walls underwent malignant transformation of the benign thymic epithelium. Immunohistochemically, the tumor cells were positive for cytokeratin (CK) 7, CK20, CD5, and CDX-2, and negative for thyroid transcription factor-1. In conclusion, the mucinous thymic adenocarcinoma should be recognized as a separate histopathological entity and considered in the differential diagnosis of mediastinal carcinomas.
    08/2012; 46(4):377-81. DOI:10.4132/KoreanJPathol.2012.46.4.377
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    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Primary adenocarcinoma of thymus is extremely rare. CASE PRESENTATION: This is a case of primary adenocarcinoma with intestinal differentiation and focal mucin production in the thymus. Thymic cyst was associated with this tumor. Intestinal differentiation was confirmed by immunohistochemical stain with positivity for CDX-2, CK20, villin, MOC31 and focal positivity of CK7. Array comperative genomic hybridization (CGH) analysis showed a complex pattern of chromosomal imbalances including homozygous deletion at the HLA locus in chromosomal region 6p21.32. CONCLUSION: This rare tumor shows a similar genetic aberration with other studied thymic epithelial tumors.
    BMC Clinical Pathology 05/2013; 13(1):17. DOI:10.1186/1472-6890-13-17
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    ABSTRACT: The diagnosis of thymic epithelial neoplasms is normally rendered after careful evaluation of their histologic features. In some cases, however, the morphological heterogeneity or overlap with neoplasms of other organ systems can lead to diagnostic uncertainty. On the basis of this, the use of immunohistochemical stains as a diagnostic adjunct has become a popular tool. Although undoubtedly, immunohistochemistry has its role in the diagnosis of difficult cases, to date there are no specific markers that would distinguish thymic epithelial neoplasms from other tumors and interpretation of immunohistochemical results should only ever be made in conjunction with accurate morphologic analysis and careful clinical evaluation. This article will review the current knowledge of the immunohistochemical phenotype of thymic epithelial neoplasms with particular emphasis on its use for diagnostic purposes and the latest advances in this field.
    Applied immunohistochemistry & molecular morphology: AIMM / official publication of the Society for Applied Immunohistochemistry 06/2014; 22(7). DOI:10.1097/PAI.0b013e3182a53856 · 2.06 Impact Factor

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