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Follicular variant of papillary thyroid carcinoma is a lesion that frequently causes difficulties from a diagnostic perspective in the laboratory. The purpose of this study was to interrogate a cohort of archival thyroid lesions using gene expression analysis of a panel of markers proposed to have utility as adjunctive markers in the diagnosis of thyroid neoplasia and follicular variant of papillary thyroid carcinoma in particular. Laser Capture Microdissection was used to procure pure cell populations for extraction. In addition a novel, multiplex preamplification technique was used to facilitate analysis of multiple targets. The panel comprised: HLA-DMA, HLA-DBQ1, CD74, CSNK1G2, IRF3, KRAS2, LYN, MT1K, MT1X, RAB23, TGFB1 and TOP2A, with CDKN1B as an endogenous control. Expression profiles for each target were generated using TaqMan Real-Time PCR. HLA-DMA, HLA-DQB1, MT1X, CSNK1G2 and RAB23 were found to be differentially expressed (P<0.05) when comparing follicular adenoma and follicular variant of papillary thyroid carcinoma. Comparison of follicular adenoma and follicular thyroid carcinoma groups showed significant differential expression for MT1K, MT1X and RAB23 (P<0.05). Comparison of the papillary thyroid carcinoma group (classic and follicular variants) and the follicular adenoma group showed differential expression for CSNK1G2, HLA-DQB1, MT1X and RAB23 (P<0.05). Finally, KRAS2 was found to be differentially expressed (P<0.05) when comparing the papillary thyroid carcinoma and follicular thyroid carcinoma groups. This panel of molecular targets discriminates between follicular adenoma, papillary thyroid carcinoma, follicular variant of papillary thyroid carcinoma and follicular thyroid carcinoma by their expression repertoires. It may have utility for broader use in the setting of fine-needle aspiration cytology and could improve the definitive diagnosis of certain categories of thyroid malignancy.

Original publication




Journal article


Mod Pathol

Publication Date





1095 - 1102


Adenoma, Carcinoma, Papillary, Carcinoma, Papillary, Follicular, Diagnosis, Differential, Gene Expression, Gene Expression Profiling, Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic, Genetic Markers, Humans, Lasers, Microdissection, Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction, Thyroid Neoplasms