Context: AIP mutations (AIPmut) give rise to a pituitary adenoma predisposition that occurs in familial isolated pituitary adenomas and less often in sporadic cases. The clinical and therapeutic features of AIPmut-associated pituitary adenomas have not been studied comprehensively.
Objective: The objective of the study was to assess clinical/therapeutic characteristics of AIPmut pituitary adenomas.
Design: This study was an international, multicenter, retrospective case collection/database analysis.
Setting: The study was conducted at 36 tertiary referral endocrine and clinical genetics departments.
Patients: Patients included 96 patients with germline AIPmut and pituitary adenomas and 232 matched AIPmut-negative acromegaly controls.
Results: The AIPmut population was predominantly young and male (63.5%); first symptoms occurred as children/adolescents in 50%. At diagnosis, most tumors were macroadenomas (93.3%); extension and invasion was common. Somatotropinomas comprised 78.1% of the cohort; there were also prolactinomas (n = 13), nonsecreting adenomas (n = 7), and a TSH-secreting adenoma. AIPmut somatotropinomas were larger (P = 0.00026), with higher GH levels (P = 0.00068), more frequent extension (P = 0.018) and prolactin cosecretion (P = 0.00023), and occurred 2 decades before controls (P < 0.000001). Gigantism was more common in the AIPmut group (P < 0.000001). AIPmut somatotropinoma patients underwent more surgical interventions (P = 0.00069) and had lower decreases in GH (P = 0.00037) and IGF-I (P = 0.028) and less tumor shrinkage with somatostatin analogs (P < 0.00001) vs. controls. AIPmut prolactinomas occurred generally in young males and frequently required surgery or radiotherapy.
Conclusions: AIPmut pituitary adenomas have clinical features that may negatively impact treatment efficacy. Predisposition for aggressive disease in young patients, often in a familial setting, suggests that earlier diagnosis of AIPmut pituitary adenomas may have clinical utility.