Cathepsin K expression in clear cell “sugar” tumor (PEComa) of the lung

Anna Caliò, Maria Cecilia Mengoli, Alberto Cavazza, Giulio Rossi, Claudio Ghimenton, Matteo Brunelli, Maurizio Pea, Marco Chilosi, Lisa Marcolini, Guido Martignoni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Clear cell “sugar” tumor is a rare benign neoplasm arising in the lung, considered as a part of the PEComa family. As PEComas of other sites, this tumor expresses melanocytic markers such as HMB45 and Melan-A. Despite cathepsin K, MITF and CD68 staining are known to be positive in a large number of PEComas and TFE3 rearrangement has been reported in a subset of PEComas, no data is available regarding the expression of these markers and the occurrence of TFE3 and TFEB rearrangement in clear cell “sugar” tumor of the lung. We have investigated the immunolabeling of cathepsin K, MITF, and CD68 in five cases of clear cell “sugar” tumor. Moreover, we have also sought the presence of TFE3 and TFEB rearrangement by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) assay. In all tumors, strong immunoreactivity of cathepsin K and CD68 (PG-M1 and KP1 clone) was demonstrated, whereas none of them labeled for MITF staining and showed TFE3 or TFEB rearrangement. These findings widen the immunohistochemical profile of clear cell “sugar” tumor providing useful new markers for challenging cases. The expression of lysosomal markers, such as cathepsin K and CD68, strengthens the hypothesis that this tumor is part of the PEComa family.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalVirchows Archiv
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Mar 7 2018


  • Cathepsin K
  • Clear cell “sugar” tumor
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • PEComa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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