Background: Germline mutations in the aryl hydrocarbon receptor-interacting protein (AIP) gene and the p27KIP1 encoding gene CDKN1B have been associated with two well-defined hereditary conditions, familial isolated pituitary adenoma (FIPA) and multiple endocrine neoplasia type 4 (MEN4). Somatotropinomas are present in most AIP mutated FIPA kindreds, as well as in two-thirds of MEN4 patients who carry pituitary tumors. Methods: Germline DNA samples of 131 Italian sporadic acromegalic patients including 38 individuals with multiple tumors, and of six FIPA families (four homogeneous for prolactinomas and two heterogeneous with prolactin/nonfunctioning pituitary adenomas) were collected in a multicentric collaborative study. The prevalence of AIP and CDKN1B gene point mutations and copy number variations were evaluated. Results: Two novel (IVS3+1G>A and c.871G>A) and one previously described (c.911G>A) AIP mutations were detected in four apparently sporadic cases (3.1%) with relatively high age at diagnosis (49±18, range 30-67). No mutations/rearrangements were detected in FIPA families. The highly conserved c.871G>A substitution was detected in a patient who also carried a MEN1 mutation suggesting that she is a double heterozygote. The possible pathogenic effect on AIP splicing of the silent substitution c.144G>A found in another patient was ruled out using a minigene-based approach. CDKN1B mutations/rearrangements were neither identified in patients with multiple neoplasia nor in FIPA families. Conclusion: AIP is mutated in about 3% of apparently sporadic acromegalic patients. The relatively high age at diagnosis, as well as its sporadic presentation, suggests that these patients are carriers of mutations with reduced pathogenicity. p27KIP1 is unlikely to represent the common unifying nonendocrine etiology for acromegaly and cancer.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism