Analysis of peripheral blood or tumor DNA samples from 101 patients with apparent sporadic medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC) was performed to assess the frequency of RET proto-oncogene mutations in this patient population. Peripheral blood and/or tumor DNA was amplified by polymerase chain reaction. DNA sequence or restriction enzyme analysis was performed to detect mutations of RET proto-oncogene codons 609, 611, 618, 620, 634, 768, and 918. Six of 101 patients with apparent sporadic MTC had peripheral blood DNA mutations more commonly associated with hereditary MTC. In 4 patients, these mutations led to the identification of previously unrecognized kindreds. The remaining 2 patients were examples of de novo mutations. A codon 918 mutation was found in 14 of 57 (~25%) tumor DNA samples. Mutations were not identified in the remaining patients. In this large cancer center population, ~6%, of patients with sporadic MTC carry peripheral blood DNA mutations, either inherited or de novo, more commonly associated with MEN 2A or familial MTC. Seven additional gene carriers were identified as a direct result of these studies, a 2 fold multiplying effect. We conclude routine application of RET proto- oncogene testing should be included in all cases of apparent sporadic MTC.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Clinical Biochemistry
- Biochemistry, medical