Many facets of chromosome 3p cytogenetic findings in clear cell renal carcinoma: the need for agreement in assessment FISH analysis to avoid diagnostic errors

Histol Histopathol. 2011 Sep;26(9):1207-13. doi: 10.14670/HH-26.1207.


Abnormalities of the locus chromosome 3p and the entire chromosome 3 are involved in the cancerogenesis of clear cell renal carcinoma and may be detected by interphase fluorescence in situ hybridization (interphase FISH). We observed a variable detection rate of chromosome 3p/3 abnormalities in different series of clear cell renal carcinoma. Therefore, we focused on problematic issues when performing analysis on routinely available formalin-fixed and paraffin embedded tissue. A group of studies encountered a single approach to chromosome 3p detection, by using probe/s to map different codes of the short arm 3p without a control of the entire chromosome 3. Deletion of chromosome 3p and monosomy of chromosome 3 ranged from 38% to 100% in clear cell renal carcinoma. Cut-off values for the threshold were chosen randomly or obtained by calculation of the mean value plus 1 or 2 or 3 standard deviations. Loss of chromosome 3p was assessed either as the percentage of single signals on the total number of nuclei, or applying a double approach with corrections of control chromosome 3. Moreover, cut off values were sometimes arbitrarily corrected with the findings from normal adjacent renal parenchyma. A consensus of experts in the field is needed in order to define the best methodological approach and the appropriate threshold in assessment 3p deletion when interphase FISH is performed in clear cell renal carcinoma. This harbours relevant diagnostic and therapeutic implications, at light also of targeted therapies recently available to clear cell renal carcinoma.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma, Clear Cell / diagnosis*
  • Adenocarcinoma, Clear Cell / pathology*
  • Animals
  • Cell Nucleus / pathology
  • Chromosome Aberrations
  • Chromosomes, Human, Pair 3*
  • Humans
  • In Situ Hybridization, Fluorescence
  • Kidney / pathology
  • Kidney Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Kidney Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Polyploidy