Low-grade epilepsy-associated neuroepithelial tumours - the 2016 WHO classification

Nat Rev Neurol. 2016 Dec;12(12):732-740. doi: 10.1038/nrneurol.2016.173. Epub 2016 Nov 18.


Rapid developments in molecular genetic technology and research have swiftly advanced our understanding of neuro-oncology. As a consequence, the WHO invited their expert panels to revise the current classification system of brain tumours and to introduce, for the first time, a molecular genetic approach for selected tumour entities, thus setting a new gold standard in histopathology. The revised 5th edition of the 'blue book' was released in May 2016 and will have a major impact in stratifying diagnosis and treatment. However, low-grade neuroepithelial tumours that present with early-onset focal epilepsy and are mostly seen in children and young adults (previously designated as long-term epilepsy-associated neuroepithelial tumours, LEAT) lack such innovative clinicopathological and molecular genetic tools. The Neuropathology Task Force of the International League against Epilepsy will critically discuss this issue, and will offer perspectives on how to decipher and validate clinically meaningful LEAT entities using the current WHO approach that integrates clinicopathological and genetic classification systems.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Brain Neoplasms / classification*
  • Brain Neoplasms / complications*
  • Brain Neoplasms / genetics
  • Brain Neoplasms / pathology
  • Epilepsy / etiology*
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms, Neuroepithelial / classification*
  • Neoplasms, Neuroepithelial / complications*
  • Neoplasms, Neuroepithelial / genetics
  • Neoplasms, Neuroepithelial / pathology
  • World Health Organization*