Mattsson JS, Imgenberg-Kreuz J, Edlund K, Botling J, Micke P
Histopathology 61 (4) 744-748 [2012-10-00; online 2012-03-31]
Activating epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and KRAS mutations characterize molecular subgroups of non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) with a strong predictive value for response to EGFR inhibitor therapy. However, the temporal occurrence and clonal stability of these mutations during the course of cancer progression are debated. The aim of this study was to characterize the presence of EGFR and KRAS mutations in histologically different areas of primary NSCLC lesions. Formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded cancer specimens from six cases with EGFR mutations and five cases with KRAS mutations were selected from a pool of primary resected NSCLC patients. From each tumour, three morphologically distinct areas were manually microdissected and analysed for the presence of mutations. The results demonstrated consistent EGFR and KRAS mutation status in the different histological areas of all primary tumours. The results support the concept that activating EGFR and KRAS mutations are oncogenic events that are consistently present throughout the primary tumour independently of histological heterogeneity. Thus, for molecular diagnostics, any part of the tumour is likely to be representative for EGFR and KRAS mutation testing.