Metastatic-prone telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT) promoter and v-Raf murine sarcoma viral oncogene homolog B (BRAF) mutated tall cell variant of papillary thyroid carcinoma arising in ectopic thyroid tissue: A case report

Medicine (Baltimore). 2021 Jan 15;100(2):e24237. doi: 10.1097/MD.0000000000024237.

Abstract

Rationale: Mutations of the v-Raf murine sarcoma viral oncogene homolog B (BRAF) oncogene and telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT) promoter region are indicators of poor prognosis in papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC) and might predict future occurrences of distant metastases. However, the clinical significance of these genetic aberrancies in PTCs arising in ectopic locations is not well established.

Patient concerns: We describe a patient with a previous history of radioiodine (RAI)-treated hyperthyroidism and a surgically resected right-sided follicular thyroid adenoma. In 2013, a 6 mm follicular variant papillary thyroid carcinoma was diagnosed following a left-sided thyroid lobectomy. The central compartment displayed 9 tumor-free lymph nodes, and no adjuvant treatment was planned.

Diagnoses: Three years later, a 26 mm pre-tracheal relapse was noted, however, the excised lesion was consistent with a tall cell variant of papillary thyroid carcinoma (TCV-PTC) arising in ectopic thyroid tissue. RAI treatment was commenced. Four years later, a 5 mm subcutaneous lesion in the anterior neck was surgically removed and diagnosed as metastatic TCV-PTC with a codon 600 BRAF mutation and a C228T TERT promoter mutation.

Interventions: RAI treatment was re-initiated. Molecular re-examination of the primary follicular variant papillary thyroid carcinoma demonstrated a codon 600 BRAF mutation and a TERT promoter wildtype sequence, while the primary TCV-PTC was positive for mutations in both codon 600 of BRAF as well as the TERT promoter.

Outcomes: The patient is alive and well without signs of relapse 7 months after the latest round of RAI.

Lessons: We conclude that the occurrence of combined BRAF and TERT promoter mutations in the primary lesion from 2016 was associated to the manifestation of distant metastases 4 years later, strengthening the benefit of mutational screening of these genes in clinical routine for thyroid carcinomas arising in aberrant locations.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Mutation
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins B-raf / genetics*
  • Telomerase / genetics*
  • Thyroid Cancer, Papillary / genetics*
  • Thyroid Dysgenesis / genetics*
  • Thyroid Neoplasms / genetics*

Substances

  • BRAF protein, human
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins B-raf
  • TERT protein, human
  • Telomerase