c-MYC amplification and c-myc protein expression in pancreatic acinar cell carcinomas. New insights into the molecular signature of these rare cancers

Stefano La Rosa, B Bernasconi, A Vanoli, Amedeo Sciarra, K Notohara, L Albarello, S Casnedi, P Billo, L Zhang, MG Tibiletti, Fausto Sessa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The molecular alterations of pancreatic acinar cell carcinomas (ACCs) and mixed acinar-neuroendocrine carcinomas (MANECs) are not completely understood, and the possible role of c-MYC amplification in tumor development, progression, and prognosis is not known. We have investigated c-MYC gene amplification in a series of 35 ACCs and 4 MANECs to evaluate its frequency and a possible prognostic role. Gene amplification was investigated using interphasic fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis simultaneously hybridizing c-MYC and the centromere of chromosome 8 probes. Protein expression was immunohistochemically investigated using a specific monoclonal anti-c-myc antibody. Twenty cases had clones with different polysomies of chromosome 8 in absence of c-MYC amplification, and 5 cases had one amplified clone and other clones with chromosome 8 polysomy, while the remaining 14 cases were diploid for chromosome 8 and lacked c-MYC amplification. All MANECs showed c-MYC amplification and/or polysomy which were observed in 54% pure ACCs. Six cases (15.3%) showed nuclear immunoreactivity for c-myc, but only 4/39 cases showed simultaneous c-MYC amplification/polysomy and nuclear protein expression. c-myc immunoreactivity as well as c-MYC amplification and/or chromosome 8 polysomy was not statistically associated with prognosis. Our study demonstrates that a subset of ACCs shows c-MYC alterations including gene amplification and chromosome 8 polysomy. Although they are not associated with a different prognostic signature, the fact that these alterations are present in all MANECs suggests a role in the acinar-neuroendocrine differentiation possibly involved in the pathogenesis of MANECs. © 2018, Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)435-441
Number of pages7
JournalVirchows Archiv
Volume473
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

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