We studied chromosomal abnormalities by comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) and flow cytometry in anaplastic thyroid cancer (ATC), and when present in coexisting or previous differentiated thyroid cancer (DTC). Overall 10 frozen tissues from patients with ATC and 5 cell lines (1 ATC and 4 DTCs) were analyzed. We found chomosomal abnormalities in 5 of 10 ATC tissues, with 24 abnormalities (22 gains and 2 losses). Among 8 ATCs that were associated with prior or concurrent DTC, more chomosomal abnormalities were found in ATC associated with follicular thyroid cancer (FTC) than those associated with PTC (median numbers 9.5 and 0.5, respectively, p = 0.046) or no associated differentiated thyroid cancer. Gain of 1q was relatively common in ATCs (30%). By flow cytometry, we found aneuploidy in 6 of 10 ATC tissues and diploidy in 4. There was concordance between DNA aneuploidy and the presence of chomosomal abnormalities by CGH in 4 of the 5 ATCs (p = 0.048). We also found 26 chomosomal abnormalities in an ATC cell line, 14.3 in 3 FTC cell line, and 3 in a PTC cell line. In conclusion, chomosomal abnormalities are frequent in ATCs associated with FTC, but uncommon in those associated with PTC and in ATCs with no associated differentiated thyroid cancer. These findings support the concept that PTC and FTC have different genetic backgrounds and, even after the transformation to ATC, they may retain some of their cytogenetic characteristics.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism