Κυριακή, 5 Μαΐου 2019

Brain Tumor Pathology

High-grade glioneuronal tumor with an ARHGEF2 – NTRK1 fusion gene

Abstract

Here, we report a highly unusual case of high-grade glioneuronal tumor with a neurotrophic tropomyosin receptor kinase (NTRK) fusion gene. A 13-year-old girl presented with headache and vomiting and MRI detected two cystic lesions bilaterally in the frontal areas with surrounding edema. The left larger tumor was removed by left frontal craniotomy. The tumor was diagnosed as a high-grade glioneuronal tumor, unclassified. Methylation profiling classified it as a diffuse leptomeningeal glioneuronal tumor (DLGNT) with low confidence. This tumor showed genotypes frequently found in DLGNT such as 1p/19q codeletion without IDH mutation and, however, did not have the typical DLGNT clinical and histological features. RNA sequencing identified an ARHGEF2 (encoding Rho/Rac guanine nucleotide exchange factor 2)–NTRK1 fusion gene. The presence of recurrent NTRK fusion in glioneuronal tumors has an important implication in the clinical decision making and opens up a possibility of novel targeted therapy.



Clinicopathological characteristics of circumscribed high-grade astrocytomas with an unusual combination of BRAF V600E, ATRX , and CDKN2A/B alternations

Abstract

We report four cases of high-grade astrocytoma with a BRAF V600E mutation, ATRX inactivation, and CDKN2A/B homozygous deletion. Children to young adults aged 3–46 presented with a well demarcated contrast-enhancing mass in the supratentorial area. Pathological examination revealed packed growth of short spindle to round polygonal cells including some pleomorphic cells. The tumors had less ability to infiltrate into the adjacent brain parenchyma and presented a circumscribed growth pattern. Mitosis was readily found, accompanied by focal necrosis and/or microvascular proliferation. Tumors were histologically similar in part to pleomorphic xanthoastrocytoma (PXA) or anaplastic PXA, but did not fit criteria for either neoplasm. A BRAF V600E mutation and homozygous deletion of CDKN2A/B were observed, which is similar to the genetic features of PXA or epithelioid glioblastoma, but the additional loss of ATRX nuclear immunoreactivity and absence of TERT promoter mutation were unusual findings, indicating a novel genetic profile. Despite their malignant histological features, all patients had a favorable clinical course and remained alive for 6 months to 28 years under standard medical treatment for malignant glioma. In summary, high grade astrocytomas with BRAF V600E, ATRX, and CDKN2A/B alternations had unique clinicopathological features and may be a novel subset of high grade glioma.



Reviewers in 2018


Preface


Pilomyxoid astrocytomas: a short review

Abstract

Pilomyxoid astrocytoma is a variant of pilocytic astrocytoma and the clinical, histological and molecular data point to a very close relationship as well as a more aggressive biological behavior for the former. WHO 2016 classification does not provide a specific grade for these neoplasms, but there is sufficient evidence in the literature that pilomyxoid astrocytoma has slightly worse prognosis than typical pilocytic astrocytoma. There is increasing evidence that in addition to the MAPK pathway alterations, pilomyxoid astrocytomas harbor genetic alterations that distinguish them from typical pilocytic astrocytoma



Pathologic and molecular aspects of anaplasia in circumscribed gliomas and glioneuronal tumors

Abstract

Many breakthroughs have been made in the past decade regarding our knowledge of the biological basis of the diffuse gliomas, the most common primary central nervous system (CNS) tumors. These tumors as a group are aggressive, associated with high mortality, and have a predilection for adults. However, a subset of CNS glial and glioneuronal tumors are characterized by a more circumscribed pattern of growth and occur more commonly in children and young adults. They tend to be indolent, but our understanding of anaplastic changes in these tumors continues to improve as diagnostic classifications evolve in the era of molecular pathology and more integrated and easily accessible clinical databases. The presence of anaplasia in pleomorphic xanthoastrocytomas and gangliogliomas is assigned a WHO grade III under the current classification, while the significance of anaplasia in pilocytic astrocytomas remains controversial. Recent data highlight the association of the latter with aggressive clinical behavior, as well as the presence of molecular genetic features of both pilocytic and diffuse gliomas, with the recognition that the precise terminology remains to be defined. We review the current concepts and advances regarding histopathology and molecular understanding of pilocytic astrocytomas, pleomorphic xanthoastrocytomas, and gangliogliomas, with a focus on their anaplastic counterparts.



Overview of DNA methylation in adult diffuse gliomas

Abstract

Adult diffuse gliomas form a heterogeneous group of tumors of the central nervous system that vary greatly in histology and prognosis. A significant advance during the last decade has been the identification of a set of genetic lesions that correlate well with histology and clinical outcome in diffuse gliomas. Most characteristic driver mutations consist of isocitrate dehydrogenase 1 (IDH1) and IDH2, and H3 histone family member 3A, which are strongly associated with DNA and histone methylation patterns. A well-characterized DNA methylation aberration is on the O6-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase promoter. This aberration is associated with an improved response to the DNA alkylating agent, temozolomide. Methylation alterations are used for classification or treatment decisions of diffuse gliomas. This supports the importance of considering epigenomic aberrations in the pathogenesis of gliomas. Recent DNA methylation analyses revealed a small group of IDH mutant diffuse gliomas exhibiting decreased DNA hypermethylation resulting in substantial unfavorable prognosis comparable to glioblastoma. Thus, DNA methylation patterns may become a new standard that replaces the conventional grading system based on histological diagnosis. In this review, we summarize recent developments regarding the contributions of methylation patterns to the pathogenesis of adult diffuse glioma, the interactions between methylation patterns and driver mutations, and potential epigenomic targeted therapies.



Novel concept of the border niche: glioblastoma cells use oligodendrocytes progenitor cells (GAOs) and microglia to acquire stem cell-like features

Abstract

Glioblastoma (GBM) is a major malignant brain tumor developing in adult brain white matter, characterized by rapid growth and invasion. GBM cells spread into the contralateral hemisphere, even during early tumor development. However, after complete resection of tumor mass, GBM commonly recurs around the tumor removal cavity, suggesting that a microenvironment at the tumor border provides chemo-radioresistance to GBM cells. Thus, clarification of the tumor border microenvironment is critical for improving prognosis in GBM patients. MicroRNA (miRNA) expression in samples from the tumor, tumor border, and peripheral region far from tumor mass was compared, and five miRNAs showing characteristically higher expression in the tumor border were identified, with the top three related to oligodendrocyte differentiation. Pathologically, oligodendrocyte lineage cells increased in the border, but were rare in tumors. Macrophages/microglia also colocalized in the border area. Medium cultured with oligodendrocyte progenitor cells (OPCs) and macrophages induced stemness and chemo-radioresistance in GBM cells, suggesting that OPCs and macrophages/microglia constitute a special microenvironment for GBM cells at the tumor border. The supportive function of OPCs for GBM cells has not been discussed previously. OPCs are indispensable for GBM cells to establish special niches for chemo-radioresistance outside the tumor mass.



Practical procedures for the integrated diagnosis of astrocytic and oligodendroglial tumors

Abstract

The publication of the 2016 World Health Organization Classification of Tumors of the Central Nervous System (2016 WHO CNS) represented a major change in the classification of brain tumors. However, many pathologists in Japan cannot diagnose astrocytic or oligodendroglial tumors according to the 2016 WHO CNS due to financial or technical problems. Therefore, the Japan Society of Brain Tumor Pathology established a committee for molecular diagnosis to facilitate the integrated diagnosis of astrocytic and oligodendroglial tumors in Japan. We created three levels of diagnoses: Level 1 was defined as simple histopathological diagnosis using hematoxylin and eosin staining and routine cell lineage-based immunostaining. Level 2 was defined as immunohistochemical diagnosis using immunohistochemical examinations using R132H mutation-specific IDH1, ATRX, and/or p53 antibodies. Level 3 was defined as molecular diagnosis, such as diagnosis based on 1p/19q status or the mutation status of the IDH1 and IDH2 genes. In principle, astrocytic and oligodendroglial tumors should be diagnosed based on the 2016 WHO CNS and/or cIMPACT-NOW criteria; however, the findings obtained through our diagnostic flowchart can be added to the histological diagnosis in parentheses. This classification system would be helpful for pathologists with limited resources.



The emerging clinical potential of circulating extracellular vesicles for non-invasive glioma diagnosis and disease monitoring

Abstract

Diffuse gliomas (grades II–IV) are amongst the most frequent and devastating primary brain tumours of adults. Currently, patients are monitored by clinical examination and radiographic imaging, which can be challenging to interpret and insensitive to early signs of treatment failure and tumour relapse. While brain biopsy and histologic analysis can evaluate disease progression, serial biopsies are invasive and impractical given the cumulative surgical risk, and may not capture the complete molecular landscape of an evolving tumour. The availability of a minimally invasive 'liquid biopsy' that could assess tumour activity and molecular phenotype in situ has the potential to greatly enhance patient care. Circulating extracellular vesicles (EVs) hold significant promise as robust disease-specific biomarkers accessible in the blood of patients with glioblastoma and other diffuse gliomas. EVs are membrane-bound nanoparticles shed from most if not all cells of the body, and carry DNA, RNA, protein, and lipids that reflect the identity and molecular state of their cell-of-origin. EVs can cross the blood–brain barrier and their release is upregulated in neoplasia. In this review, we describe the current knowledge of EV biology, the role of EVs in glioma biology and the current experience and challenges in profiling glioma-EVs from the circulation.



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