Background: In a number of human malignancies, the presence of lymphocytic infiltration in or around tumor tissue is commonly considered to be part of the host tumor immune response. An association between thyroid carcinoma and chronic inflammation has been described. This relationship is not fully understood, so we performed a systematic study on a follicular variant of papillary thyroid carcinoma (FVPTC), to evaluate the type and distribution of certain immunological cells and their relationship with prognostic factors. Methods: We selected 91 consecutive cases of FVPTC, in which we evaluated the presence of three different immunological cells: dendritic cells (DC), immature CD1a+ and mature DC-Lamp+; mast cells (MC), tryptase+; and macrophages (M), CD68+, in the intratumoral, peritumoral, and extratumoral areas. As a control we analyzed 44 cases of thyroid adenomas (A). Results: In the intratumoral and peritumoral areas, the expression of CD1a, tryptase, and CD68 was significantly higher in FVPTC than in adenomas. Expression of CD1a and tryptase was comparable in the extratumoral compartment, whereas CD68 expression in the extratumoral area was significantly higher in FVPTC than in adenoma (p=0.0015). DC-Lamp expression was not significantly different among the intra-tumor, peri-tumor, and extra-tumor areas of FVPTC or adenoma. It was also very interesting that nonencapsulated FVPTC were more positive to tryptase. Conclusion: We highlight a higher presence of immunological cells in carcinomas than in adenomas. On this basis, it is possible to speculate that these inflammatory elements could be involved in tumor progression and invasion, as appears to be the case for MC and M.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism