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

Pathology and molecular genetics of the pituitary gland in patients with the 'complex of spotty skin pigmentation, myxomas, endocrine overactivity and schwannomas' (Carney complex).

Carney complex ( CNC) is a familial multiple neoplasia and lentiginosis syndrome with features overlapping those of McCune-Albright syndrome (MAS) and other multiple endocrine neoplasia (MEN) syndromes like MEN type 1 (MEN 1). Pituitary tumors have been described in a number of patients with CNC; all have been growth hormone (GH) and prolactin (PRL)-producing. In at least some patients, pituitary gland involvement is manifested by hyperplastic areas; hyperplasia appears to involve somatomammotrophs only and to precede GH-producing tumor formation, in a pathway similar to that seen in MAS-related pituitary tumors (and in oncogenesis in other CNC tissues). One patient with CNC and advanced acromegaly had a GH-producing macroadenoma that showed extensive genetic changes at the chromosomal level. These changes appeared to represent secondary or tertiary genetic 'hits' involved in pituitary oncogenesis and were confirmed at the molecular level. So far, almost half of the patients with CNC have germline-inactivating mutations in the PRKAR1A gene; in their pituitary tumors, the normal allele of the PRKAR1A gene is lost. Loss of heterozygosity suggests that PRKAR1A, which codes for the regulatory subunit type 1alpha of the cAMP-dependent protein kinase A (PKA), may act as a tumor-suppressor gene in pituitary tissue. These data provide evidence for a PKA-induced somatomammotroph hyperplasia in the pituitary tissue of CNC patients; hyperplasia leads to additional genetic changes at the somatic level, which in turn cause the formation of adenomas in some, but not all, patients.[1]

References

  1. Pathology and molecular genetics of the pituitary gland in patients with the 'complex of spotty skin pigmentation, myxomas, endocrine overactivity and schwannomas' (Carney complex). Stratakis, C.A., Matyakhina, L., Courkoutsakis, N., Patronas, N., Voutetakis, A., Stergiopoulos, S., Bossis, I., Carney, J.A. Frontiers of hormone research. (2004) [Pubmed]
 
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