Heterogeneity of large cell carcinoma of the lung: An immunophenotypic and miRNA-based analysis

Mattia Barbareschi, Chiara Cantaloni, Valerio Del Vescovo, Alberto Cavazza, Valentina Monica, Rodolfo Carella, Giulio Rossi, Luca Morelli, Alberto Cucino, Massimo Silvestri, Giuseppe Tirone, Giuseppe Pelosi, Paolo Graziano, Mauro Papotti, Paolo Dalla Palma, Claudio Doglioni, Michela Alessandra Denti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Large cell carcinomas (LCCs) of the lung are heterogeneous and may be of different cell lineages. We analyzed 56 surgically resected lung tumors classified as LCC on the basis of pure morphologic grounds, using a panel of immunophenotypic markers (adenocarcinoma [ADC]-specific, thyroid transcription factor-1, cytokeratin 7, and napsin A; squamous cell carcinoma [SQCC]-specific, p63, cytokeratin 5, desmocollin 3, and Δnp63) and the quantitative analysis of microRNA-205 (microRNA sample score [mRSS]). Based on immunoprofiles 19 (34%) of the cases were reclassified as ADC and 14 (25%) as SQCC; 23 (41%) of the cases were unclassifiable. Of these 23 cases, 18 were classified as ADC and 5 as SQCC according to the mRSS. Our data show that an extended panel of immunohistochemical markers can reclassify around 60% of LCCs as ADC or SQCC. However, a relevant percentage of LCCs may escape convincing immunohistochemical classification, and mRSS could be used for further typing, but its clinical relevance needs further confirmation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)773-782
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Pathology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2011


  • Adenocarcinoma
  • Heterogeneity
  • Immunophenotype
  • Large cell carcinoma
  • Lung neoplasms
  • miRNA
  • Squamous cell carcinoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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