Estrogen and progesterone receptor determination in the papillary cystic neoplasm of the pancreas. With immunohistochemical and ultrastructural observations

Cancer. 1987 Oct 1;60(7):1604-11. doi: 10.1002/1097-0142(19871001)60:7<1604::aid-cncr2820600731>;2-#.


Two cases of papillary cystic neoplasm (PCN) of the pancreas occurring in 18- and 34-year-old women are described. In both, the clinicopathologic features were typical. Immunohistochemical staining for neuron-specific enolase (NSE), S100 protein (S100), alpha-fetoprotein (AFP), carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA), and several peptide hormones was negative. Alpha-1-antitrypsin immunoreactivity was prominent, and its significance is discussed. Ultrastructural features were most compatible with partial acinar differentiation. Of the well-described cases of PCN, approximately 95% have occurred in women between the ages of 12 and 35, suggesting a role for hormonal factors in the pathogenesis of this tumor. Consequently, tumor tissue from one patient was assayed for estrogen and progesterone receptors: significant levels of high-affinity receptors were demonstrated for both hormones. Assays for the same receptors in five normal pancreases were negative. This constitutes the first reported measurement of these receptors in the PCN; the results indicate that the PCN may be another hormone-sensitive tumor.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Estradiol / metabolism
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / analysis*
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / surgery
  • Papilloma / analysis*
  • Papilloma / surgery
  • Promegestone / metabolism
  • Receptors, Estrogen / analysis*
  • Receptors, Progesterone / analysis*
  • alpha 1-Antitrypsin / analysis


  • Receptors, Estrogen
  • Receptors, Progesterone
  • alpha 1-Antitrypsin
  • Estradiol
  • Promegestone