New diagnostic and molecular characteristics of malignant mesothelioma

Ultrastruct Pathol. 2008 Nov-Dec;32(6):227-40. [Link]

Davidson B.

Division of Pathology, Norwegian Radium Hospital, Rikshospitalet University Hospital, Oslo, Norway.


Malignant mesothelioma is a primary cancer of the serosal cavities, an anatomic site that is also frequently affected by metastatic disease, predominantly from primary carcinomas of the lung, breast, and ovary. Advances in immunohistochemistry have resulted in improved diagnostic sensitivity and specificity in the differential diagnosis between metastatic adenocarcinoma and malignant mesothelioma in both cytological and histological material. Recently, the author’s group applied high throughput technology to the identification of new markers that may aid in differentiating malignant mesothelioma from ovarian and peritoneal serous carcinoma, tumors with closely related histogenesis and antigenic profile. In addition to the improved tools available for serosal cancer diagnosis, knowledge regarding the biology of malignant mesothelioma has been accumulating in recent years. This review presents current data regarding the diagnostic and biological aspects of malignant mesothelioma.