Detection of EGFR and K-ras mutations for diagnosis of multiple lung adenocarcinomas

Front Biosci (Landmark Ed). 2011 Jun 1;16:2961-9. doi: 10.2741/3891.


The incidence of multiple primary lung adenocarcinoma (MPLA) is increasing, and it is important to distinguish MPLA from intrapulmonary metastasis (IPM) in order to determine the therapeutic strategy. However, there is no reliable method to differentiate between the two. The purpose of this study was to distinguish MPLA from IPM based on the gene status of EGFR and K-ras and the morphological Noguchi classification system. Sixty-eight tumors from 34 cases of clinical MPLA were evaluated. Of them, 11 cases (32.4%) were diagnosed as biological MPLA (bMPLA) by EGFR/K-ras mutation analyses, and 12 cases (35.3%) by morphological analysis. In all, 23 of the 34 cases (67.6%) were diagnosed as bMPLA. The remaining 11 cases were diagnosed as biological IPM (bIPM). The 5-year survival rates of bMPLA and bIPM were 90.9% and 63.6%, respectively (p=0.04). These findings suggest that the combination method including gene mutation and morphological analysis can guide treatment decisions and that there is a need for systemic chemotherapy, and surveillance monitoring.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / diagnosis*
  • Adenocarcinoma / genetics*
  • Adenocarcinoma / secondary
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • ErbB Receptors / genetics
  • Female
  • Genes, erbB-1*
  • Genes, ras*
  • Humans
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Lung Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Lung Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Lung Neoplasms / secondary
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mutation*
  • Neoplasms, Multiple Primary / diagnosis*
  • Neoplasms, Multiple Primary / genetics*


  • EGFR protein, human
  • ErbB Receptors