Finding will improve accuracy of cancer diagnosis

April 29, 2009

Van Andel Research Institute (VARI) investigators working in collaboration with Cleveland Clinic researchers have determined that two types of kidney tumors previously thought to be different diseases are actually variations of the same disease. This finding will help doctors to more accurately diagnose the disease in patients, and demonstrates the importance of using molecular data to diagnose cancer in general.

Because adult cystic nephroma (CN) and mixed epithelial and stromal tumors (MEST) produce tumors of differing appearance that include different types of cells, traditionally they have been diagnosed as different diseases. The Cleveland Clinic-VARI study, published recently in The American Journal of Surgical Pathology, demonstrates through molecular analysis that the two types of are variations of the same disease.

"Cancer is often diagnosed by the appearance of the and the types of cells it is made up of," said VARI Distinguished Scientific Investigator Bin Tean Teh, M.D., Ph.D., one of the authors of the study, "but molecular information can allow us to make the determination that two tumors of dissimilar appearance and cell type are, in fact, the same disease. This has important implications for the diagnosis of cancer in general."

Both CN and MEST primarily affect middle-aged females. The primary difference between the two is the appearance of the tumors. Researchers compared tissues of CN tumors and MEST to other kidney tumors and normal kidney tissue at the molecular level and found several pieces of evidence that indicated that CN and MEST are the same type of .

"The more data we have, the more we can understand cancer; the more we understand, the better equipped we are to fight it," said Teh.

"CN and MEST had long been considered as two different entities. Yet some recent studies also suggested they may be the same entity with varying morphology. Such discrepancy caused confusion and frustration among pathologists and urologists. Our study provided by far the most convincing molecular evidence that the two are genetically very similar and should be considered as the same disease entity," said Cleveland Clinic Anatomic and Clinical Pathologist Ming Zhou, M.D., Ph.D., lead author of the study. "This study is an example of how practicing surgical pathologists could use the molecular tool to improve their diagnostic capability and impact patient care."

Source: Van Andel Research Institute

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Single blood test screens for eight cancer types

January 18, 2018
Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center researchers developed a single blood test that screens for eight common cancer types and helps identify the location of the cancer.

Researchers find a way to 'starve' cancer

January 18, 2018
Researchers at Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) have demonstrated for the first time that it is possible to starve a tumor and stop its growth with a newly discovered small compound that blocks uptake of the vital ...

How cancer metastasis happens: Researchers reveal a key mechanism

January 18, 2018
Cancer metastasis, the migration of cells from a primary tumor to form distant tumors in the body, can be triggered by a chronic leakage of DNA within tumor cells, according to a team led by Weill Cornell Medicine and Memorial ...

Modular gene enhancer promotes leukemia and regulates effectiveness of chemotherapy

January 18, 2018
Every day, billions of new blood cells are generated in the bone marrow. The gene Myc is known to play an important role in this process, and is also known to play a role in cancer. Scientists from the German Cancer Research ...

These foods may up your odds for colon cancer

January 18, 2018
(HealthDay)—Chowing down on red meat, white bread and sugar-laden drinks might increase your long-term risk of colon cancer, a new study suggests.

The pill lowers ovarian cancer risk, even for smokers

January 18, 2018
(HealthDay)—It's known that use of the birth control pill is tied to lower odds for ovarian cancer, but new research shows the benefit extends to smokers or women who are obese.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.