Transplacental and other routes of cancer transmission between individuals

J Pediatr Hematol Oncol. 2003 Jun;25(6):430-4. doi: 10.1097/00043426-200306000-00002.


Cancer in pregnancy is not rare, and the possibility of transmission of malignancy from mother to child, while infrequent, represents a clinical challenge for the primary pediatric hematologist-oncologist. The authors summarize all reported cases of vertically transmitted cancer and review other reported cases of person-to-person transfer of malignancy. As these cases represent a unique physiologic model of tumor transplantation, the biology of cancer transmission is discussed and provisional guidelines are given for the screening of infants born to women with cancer.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Disease Transmission, Infectious*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infectious Disease Transmission, Vertical*
  • Maternal-Fetal Exchange
  • Neoplasm Metastasis / pathology*
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications, Neoplastic / pathology*