PTEN hamartoma tumor syndrome (PHTS) is a hereditary disorder caused by germline inactivating mutations of the PTEN gene. PHTS includes Cowden syndrome and Bannayan-Riley-Ruvalcaba syndrome. We describe how the peculiar pathologic and immunohistochemical thyroid features lead pathologists to suggest PHTS.
A 28-year-old white Spanish woman had a multinodular goiter. Total thyroidectomy was performed after fine-needle aspiration biopsy. Microscopic, immunohistochemical, and molecular analyses of the thyroid lesions were realized.
The thyroid was multinodular, showing one papillary microcarcinoma, five follicular adenomas, three adenolipomas, 46 tiny adenomatous nodules (microadenomas), scattered foci of adipose tissue, and lymphocytic thyroiditis. Tumors were positive for thyroglobulin, thyroperoxidase, pendrin, cyclin D1, and p27 but negative for calcitonin and PTEN. A germline heterozygous deletion of one adenine at nucleotide 827 in exon 8 of the PTEN gene was confirmed. No BRAF, NRAS, or KRAS somatic mutations were detected in the papillary microcarcinoma, follicular adenoma, adenolipomas, or microadenomas. Negativity for PTEN was also found in the colonic tubulovillous adenoma and the storiform collagenoma.
Pathologists play a crucial role in recognizing pathologic thyroid findings associated with PHTS for selecting patients for genetic testing.