Can BAP1 expression loss in mesothelial cells be an indicator of malignancy?

Journal of Pathology and Translational Medicine 2020 November 9 [Link]

Hanife Gulnihal Ozdemir, Sermin Coban Kokten, Nagehan Ozdemir Barisik


Background: Malignant mesothelioma is a highly aggressive tumor that can be confused with a benign mesothelial lesion, especially cytomorphologic lesions. BRCA1-associated protein 1 (BAP1) acts as a tumor suppressor. In this study, we aim to investigate the value of BAP1 staining of malignant mesothelioma cases with expression loss and diagnosis in cell block and biopsy tissue.

Materials and methods: Between January 2009 and March 2017, 64 mesotheliomas, 117 reactive mesothelial hyperplasias, and 20 fibrinous pleuritis/pericarditis were diagnosed with morphologic and immunohistochemical findings in our pathology clinic and were included in the study. Formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded tissues were immunohistochemically examined for BAP1. Inflammatory and stromal cells were used as positive internal controls. BAP1 was assessed for nuclear staining in mesothelial cells.

Results: Examinations of the relationship between patient diagnosis and BAP1 biopsy status showed that the BAP1 loss rate (76.6%) was significantly higher in malignant mesothelioma cases than in other benign diseases (0%) (p<.001). Sensitivity and specificity were 76.56% and 100%, respectively, for biopsy tissue from malignant mesothelioma. Sensitivity and specificity were both 100% for BAP1 test on cell block tissue. Furthermore, the consistency between BAP1 cell block and biopsy results was excellent (ΔΈ=0.90) and the correlation was significant (p<.001).

Conclusion: This study shows that BAP1 expression loss in both cytology and biopsy tissue in biopsy-confirmed malignant mesothelioma cases is an essential parameter for malignant mesothelioma diagnosis.