Diagnostic identification of malignant cells in the cerebrospinal fluid by tumor-specific qRT-PCR

Cristina Rosanda, Claudio Gambini, Barbara Carlini, Massimo Conte, Bruno De Bernardi, Alberto Garaventa, Maria Valeria Corrias

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Tumor specific quantitative RT-PCRs for two neuroblastoma specific molecular markers, tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and GD2 synthase, were used to unequivocally demonstrate the neoplastic nature of the cells present in the cerebrospinal fluid of a neuroblastoma patient. After radical surgery of two separate tumoral lesions, localized in the extradural area, the patient presented with meningitis. Common sites of neuroblastoma metastatization, e.g. bone and bone marrow, were not infiltrated by tumor cells, as assessed by standard scintigraphy, morphological investigation and by sensitive and specific immunocytochemical and molecular assays. The results presented here demonstrate the successful use of tumor-specific qRT-PCRs in cerebrospinal fluid to investigate questionable clinical cases. The technique, which compared to other detection methods (e.g., immunocytochemistry) requires very few cells, yields unambiguous information once a suspected diagnosis has been formulated and a tumor-specific molecular marker is available.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)223-226
Number of pages4
JournalClinical & Experimental Metastasis
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2006


  • Cancer
  • CSF
  • Detection
  • GD2 synthase
  • Neuroblastoma
  • Tyrosine hydroxylase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research


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