High-grade neuroendocrine carcinomas display unique cytogenetic aberrations

Jeanna L Welborn, Helen Jenks, Janet Taplett, Paula Walling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Neuroendocrine tumors represent a spectrum of tumor types with different biologic and clinical features. The morphologic types include the low-grade typical and atypical carcinoids and the high-grade small cell and large cell neuroendocrine carcinomas (NECs). Cytogenetic descriptions of high-grade NECs are rare. Complete karyotypic descriptions of 34 high-grade NECs are reviewed: 7 extrapulmonary small cell NECs, 3 metastatic NECs of unknown primary, and 24 small cell lung carcinomas (SCLCs). Chromosomal deletions are more frequent than gains and often involve the entire chromosome arm. Typical aberrations are deletions of chromosome 3p, 5q, 10q, and 17p and gains of 1q, 3q, and 5p occurring as isochromosomes. Non-small cell lung cancers (NSCLCs) have different cytogenetic aberrations, but those with a metastatic phenotype display the identical aberrations as SCLC, a tumor known for its metastatic phenotype at onset. A genetic classification of lung cancer that incorporates the pattern of recurrent chromosome aberrations may be a better predictor of clinical outcome than a morphologic classification.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)33-41
Number of pages9
JournalCancer Genetics and Cytogenetics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Nov 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Genetics
  • Molecular Biology


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