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ABSTRACT: More than 50% of patients with typical MEN-2B have a de novo M918T germline mutation of the RET protooncogene. However, even in typical MEN-2B, extrathyroidal manifestations of MEN-2B can be found to be differently expressed. We analyzed the clinical manifestation and course in 21 patients harboring a de novo RET M918T mutation. Mean age at MEN-2B diagnosis was 14.2 years (range: 1-31 years). All patients had medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC). At the time of syndrome diagnosis, oral manifestations (bumpy lips, ganglioneuroma), ocular manifestations (corneal fibers, conjunctivitis sicca), intestinal dysfunctions, musculoskeletal manifestations, and pheochromocytoma were found in 86%, 90%, 74%, 79%, and 19% of the patients, respectively. At the time of follow-up examination, the symptoms were found at higher frequency. Severe intestinal manifestation was predominantly found in patients with prepubertal onset (< or = 12 years) of MTC (n = 4/10) compared with patients with late onset (> 12 years) of MTC (n = 0/11) (40% versus 0%; p = 0.019). Although biochemical cure was found only in four patients with early onset of MTC, the long-term prognosis for patients with early onset of MTC was poorer than for patients presenting with late onset of MTC (p = 0.005). During mean follow-up of 55.8 months (range: 3-161 months), seven patients (33%) died from MTC. In conclusion, whereas most typical MEN-2B symptoms were found to be age-related, severe intestinal manifestation was found to be predominantly expressed in patients with early onset of MTC. Furthermore, in patients with early onset of MTC who could not be biochemically cured, the long-term prognosis was found to be worse than that of non-cured patients with late onset of MTC, suggesting an additional pathological process in the younger subgroup reinforcing the very high transforming in vitro activity of the M918T RET mutation.
World Journal of Surgery 01/2005; 28(12):1305-11. · 2.23 Impact Factor