From Malignant Thyroid Teratoma to Thyroblastoma: Evolution of a Newly-recognized DICER1-associated Malignancy

Adv Anat Pathol. 2022 Sep 7. doi: 10.1097/PAP.0000000000000364. Online ahead of print.


Thyroblastoma is a novel thyroid malignancy included in the 5th Edition WHO Classification of Endocrine and Neuroendocrine Tumours. The majority of tumors now classified as thyroblastoma were originally regarded to be malignant thyroid teratomas. However, these neoplasms were recently recognized as a separate entity based on a distinctive constellation of primitive multilineage elements, including immature thyroid epithelium, undifferentiated or rhabdomyoblastic spindle cell proliferations, and neuroepithelial blastema, as well as recurrent DICER1 hotspot mutations. Thyroblastoma is an aggressive tumor that leads to death from disease in ~50% of patients, making it essential to differentiate this entity from a wide range of other thyroid tumors that show overlapping histologic features or DICER1 mutations. This review aims to provide a practical overview of the background, clinicopathologic features, molecular underpinnings, and differential diagnosis of this recently-described and molecularly-defined entity.