Genomic and expression profiling of adrenocortical carcinoma: application to diagnosis, prognosis and treatment

Future Oncol. 2009 Jun;5(5):641-55. doi: 10.2217/fon.09.45.


Adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC) is an aggressive endocrine tumor with a poor 5-year survival rate of 10-20%. Current therapy is often ineffective and may be associated with intolerable side effects. Although ACC is extremely rare, recent advances in genomic and expression profiling, coupled with knowledge gained from the study of the inherited syndromes that increase ACC risk, are beginning to bring together a picture of a tumor type dependent on p53, the G2/M cell cycle transition and IGF2 stimulation. Nevertheless, ACC remains a heterogeneous disease. Only recently have sufficient tumors been characterized and results published to permit an exploration of this diversity. Advances in treatment will depend on exploiting those pathways already implicated in ACC, along with those yet to be identified, and testing those treatments in better models of the disease than the three cell lines that currently exist and are widely available to the community.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adrenal Cortex Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Adrenal Cortex Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Adrenal Cortex Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Adrenocortical Carcinoma / diagnosis*
  • Adrenocortical Carcinoma / genetics*
  • Adrenocortical Carcinoma / therapy*
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Humans
  • Prognosis