Molecular and Immunohistochemical Testing in Mesothelioma and Other Mesothelial Lesions

Archives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine 2024 January 8 [Link]

Yin P Hung, Lucian R Chirieac


Context.—: Molecular testing has increasingly been utilized in the evaluation of mesothelioma. Diffuse mesothelioma comprises multiple distinct genetic subgroups. While most diffuse mesotheliomas lack oncogenic kinase mutations and instead harbor alterations involving tumor suppressors and chromatin regulators, a minor subset of tumors is characterized by uncommon alterations such as germline mutations, genomic near-haploidization, ALK rearrangement, ATF1 rearrangement, or EWSR1::YY1 fusion.

Objective.—: To provide updates on the salient molecular features of diffuse mesothelioma, mesothelioma in situ, and other mesothelial lesions: well-differentiated papillary mesothelial tumor, adenomatoid tumor, peritoneal inclusion cyst, and others. We consider the diagnostic, prognostic, and predictive utility of molecular testing in mesothelial lesions.

Data sources.—: We performed a literature review of recently described genetic features, molecular approaches, and immunohistochemical tools, including BAP1, MTAP, and merlin in mesothelioma and other mesothelial lesions.

Conclusions.—: Our evolving understanding of the molecular diversity of diffuse mesothelioma and other mesothelial lesions has led to considerable changes in pathology diagnostic practice, including the application of immunohistochemical markers such as BAP1, MTAP, and merlin (NF2), which are surrogates of mutation status. In young patients and/or those without significant asbestos exposure, unusual mesothelioma genetics such as germline mutations, ALK rearrangement, and ATF1 rearrangement should be considered.