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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Primary undifferentiated small cell carcinoma of the esophagus.

We histologically examined undifferentiated small cell carcinoma of the esophagus from 21 patients and used immunohistochemical methods for detection of chromogranin A and p53, bcl-2, and Rb oncoproteins. Nine (43%) of the 21 carcinomas consisted solely of undifferentiated cells, but heterogeneous components of in situ or invasive squamous cell carcinoma or mucoepidermoid carcinoma were observed in the other 12 (57%) tumors. Squamous cell carcinoma in situ was observed in the mucosa adjacent to the main tumor in 7 (50%) of the 14 resected esophageal specimens. An admixture of invasive squamous cell carcinoma and undifferentiated carcinoma was observed in 4 (19%) of the 21 tumors, and mucoepidermoid carcinoma was noted in one case. Chromogranin A staining yielded a positive reaction in two (10%) undifferentiated components but was negative in all heterogeneous components. Multiple sites of p53 immunopositivity were seen in the undifferentiated component of 17 (81%) of the 21 tumors, as well as in the in situ or invasive squamous cell carcinoma or mucoepidermoid carcinoma components of 9 (75%) of 12 tumors. Seven (33%) of the 21 tumors showed positive bcl-2 immunoreactivity in the small cell component, but all of the heterogeneous components were negative. Rb protein immunoreactivity was observed in the small cell component of one (5%) case and in 9 (75%) of the 12 heterogeneous components. Six (86%) of the seven in situ squamous cell carcinoma components were positive for Rb protein. Eighteen (86%) of the 21 patients died within 24 months of diagnosis. Two patients (10%) who survived for more than 24 months had received chemotherapy.[1]


  1. Primary undifferentiated small cell carcinoma of the esophagus. Takubo, K., Nakamura, K., Sawabe, M., Arai, T., Esaki, Y., Miyashita, M., Mafune, K., Tanaka, Y., Sasajima, K. Hum. Pathol. (1999) [Pubmed]
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