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      Follicular Thyroid Carcinoma Metastatic to the Kidney: Report of a Case with Cytohistologic Correlation


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          Here we report a case of a 45-year-old female who underwent thyroidectomy for thyroid cancer and presented 20 years later with a left renal mass. CT-guided core biopsy was performed, and imprints and histologic sections of the biopsy showed cells resembling thyroid follicular cells with a background containing colloid. Immunohistochemistry revealed positivity for thyroglobulin and thyroid transcription factor 1, consistent with metastatic follicular thyroid carcinoma (FTC). The patient later underwent radical nephrectomy; histologic sections of the resected tumor revealed an encapsulated lesion morphologically similar to the biopsy specimen. Thyroid metastases to the kidney are extremely rare and are often detected during postthyroidectomy surveillance by elevation in thyroid hormone levels, 131I scintigraphy, or 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose uptake in positron emission tomography studies. Treatment involves total thyroidectomy, resection of the metastatic foci, and 131I therapy. The differential diagnoses of renal metastasis of FTC include the encapsulated follicular variant of papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC), which possesses some of the nuclear features seen in conventional PTC but may occasionally be indistinguishable from FTC in cytologic preparations, and renal lesions such as benign thyroidization of the kidney and thyroid-like follicular carcinoma of the kidney, which mimic FTC in histologic appearance but do not stain with thyroid markers.

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          Galectin-3, fibronectin-1, CITED-1, HBME1 and cytokeratin-19 immunohistochemistry is useful for the differential diagnosis of thyroid tumors.

          The diagnosis of thyroid tumors is critical for clinical management; however, tumors with follicular architecture often present problems. We evaluated the diagnostic use of the protein expression of four genes that were found to be upregulated in papillary thyroid carcinoma compared to normal thyroid (LGALS3, FN1, CITED1 and KRT19), and of the mesothelial cell surface protein recognized by monoclonal antibody HBME1 in thyroid tumors. Tissues from 85 carcinomas (67 papillary, six follicular, eight Hürthle cell and four anaplastic) and 21 adenomas were evaluated by immunohistochemistry for the expression of these gene protein products, for example, galectin-3 (GAL3), fibronectin-1 (FN1), CITED1, cytokeratin-19 (CK19) and HBME1. Non-neoplastic thyroids (29 adenomatous and 14 thyrotoxic hyperplasia, and 59 normal) were also studied. The expression of all five proteins was significantly associated with malignancy, and highly specific (> or = 90%) for carcinoma compared to adenoma. GAL3, FN1 and/or HBME1 expression was seen in 100% of carcinomas (85/85) and in 24% of adenomas (5/21). Coexpression of multiple proteins was seen in 95% of carcinomas and only 5% of adenomas (P<0.0001). Coexpression of FN1 and GAL3 (FN1+ GAL3+, 70/85) or FN1 and HBME1 (FN1+ HBME1+, 53/85) was restricted to carcinomas, while their concurrent absence (FN1- GAL3- or FN1- HBME1-, 18/21 adenoma) was highly specific (96%) for benign lesions. Among non-neoplastic thyroids, adenomatous hyperplasia frequently expressed GAL3 (n=16), CK19 (n=9) and CITED1 (n=7), but the expression was predominantly focal in contrast to the diffuse expression in carcinomas. An immunohistochemical panel consisting of GAL3, FN1 and HBME1 may be useful in the diagnosis of follicular cell-derived thyroid tumors.
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            Follicular thyroid carcinoma: histology and prognosis.

            Follicular thyroid carcinoma (FTC) is the second most common thyroid malignancy after papillary thyroid carcinoma. The authors studied the clinical course of 132 patients with FTC to determine whether there was a direct relation between the histologic degree of invasion, tumor recurrence, and patient survival. The 132 patients in the study population underwent 182 thyroid carcinoma-related operations, and their mean follow-up was 7.5 years (median:,6 years; range, 0-39 years). The following criteria were used to define malignant follicular neoplasms: 1) minimally invasive, tumor invasion through the entire thickness of the tumor capsule; 2) moderately invasive, tumor with angioinvasion (with or without capsular invasion); and 3) widely invasive, broad area or areas of transcapsular invasion of thyroid and extrathyroidal tissue. Forty-five of 119 patients (37.8%) presented with minimally invasive FTC (capsular invasion only), 50 patients (42%) presented with moderately invasive FTC (angioinvasion with or without capsular invasion), and 24 patients (20%) presented with widely invasive FTC. At presentation, 12 patients (9%) had distant metastases, and 8 patients (6%) had lymph node metastases. Excluding 12 patients who presented with distant metastases, 21 patients (16%) developed recurrent metastases 6 months after their initial treatment. Among 45 patients with capsular invasion only, 6 patients (13%) developed recurrent or persistent disease, and 5 patients (11%) died. Of the 50 patients who had angioinvasion with or without capsular invasion, 10 patients (20%) developed recurrent or persistent disease, and 7 patients (14%) died. Patients who had angioinvasion with or without capsular invasion had a less favorable prognosis compared with patients who had capsular invasion only (P < 0.0001). Among patients who had widely invasive FTC, 9 of 24 patients (38%) developed recurrent disease, and 8 patients (33%) died; in addition, 7 of the other 24 patients (29%) had persistent disease and died. The overall death rate for patients with widely invasive FTC was 62%. Patients with persistent disease had a poorer prognosis compared with patients who had recurrent disease (P < 0.0001). Twenty-eight patients (21%) in the entire group died of FTC. In the current retrospective investigation, the authors demonstrate that patients with minimally invasive FTC (capsular invasion only) had a slightly better survival rate at 5 years (98%) compared with patients who had angioinvasion with or without capsular invasion (80%) and had better survival compared with patients who had widely invasive FTC (38%). Other (but not all) reports in the literature support the findings that FTC with angioinvasion is more aggressive than FTC with only capsular invasion yet is less aggressive than widely invasive FTC. The authors conclude that FTC no longer should be classified as either minimally invasive or widely invasive; rather, they recommend classifying FTC as minimally invasive, moderately invasive, or widely invasive, because prognosis varies according to these groupings. Copyright 2004 American Cancer Society.
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              Primary thyroid-like follicular carcinoma of the kidney: report of 6 cases of a histologically distinctive adult renal epithelial neoplasm.

              Thyroidization of kidney reminiscent of thyroid follicles with accumulation of inspissated colloid-like material in renal tubules is a hallmark of chronic pyelonephritis. We identified 6 tumors in the kidney, distinct from currently known subtypes of renal cell carcinoma, with a striking histology that closely mimicked well-differentiated thyroid follicular neoplasms and raised the possibility of metastatic follicular thyroid carcinoma. Three occurred in males and 3 in females with an age range of 29 to 83 years and size range from 1.9 to 4 cm. All tumors were encapsulated and exclusively demonstrated follicular architecture comprising of microfollicles and macrofollicles containing inspissated colloid-like material. A minor component of small tightly packed follicles devoid of secretions was also noted. The follicles were lined by cells with moderate amphophilic to eosinophilic cytoplasm with round nuclei and occasional prominent nucleoli. The tumors were nonimmunoreactive with thyroglobulin and thyroid transcription factor 1 and for markers contemporarily used for renal differentiation. The tumors had a gene expression profile distinct from clear cell and chromophobe renal cell carcinoma. Comparative genetic hybridization failed to reveal cytogenetic alterations. Mean follow-up of 47.3 months (range: 7 to 84 mo) showed that 5 patients had no evidence of disease and 1 developed a metastasis to the renal hilar lymph nodes in which the follicular architecture with colloid was retained. Thyroid-like follicular renal cell carcinoma represents a unique histologic subtype of renal cell carcinoma of low malignant potential and its primary importance is to distinguish it from metastatic carcinoma from the thyroid.

                Author and article information

                Case Rep Pathol
                Case Rep Pathol
                Case Reports in Pathology
                Hindawi Publishing Corporation
                13 October 2015
                : 2015
                : 701413
                1Department of Pathology, University of Mississippi Medical Center, 2500 North State Street, Jackson, MS 39216, USA
                2Department of Radiology, University of Mississippi Medical Center, 2500 North State Street, Jackson, MS 39216, USA
                Author notes

                Academic Editor: Ondrej Hes

                Copyright © 2015 Vikas Nath et al.

                This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                : 15 July 2015
                : 28 September 2015
                Case Report


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