The Malignant Gastrointestinal Neuroectodermal Tumor (GNET): A Distinct Entity and the Challenging Differential Diagnosis with Mesenchymal, Lymphoid, and Melanic Tumors: A Case Report and Brief Review of the Literature

Diagnostics (Basel). 2023 Mar 16;13(6):1131. doi: 10.3390/diagnostics13061131.


(1) Background: A malignant gastrointestinal neuroectodermal tumor (GNET) is an ultra-rare primary neoplasm with a distinctive histopathological, immunohistochemical, molecular, and ultramicroscopic profile, synonymous terminology with clear cell sarcoma-like tumor of the gastrointestinal tract. This case report aims to describe a case of GNET with challenging mesenchymal, lymphoid, and melanic tumor differential diagnosis. (2) Case presentation: We discuss the case of a 67-year-old male patient who presented with diffuse abdominal pain, intermittent lack of intestinal transit, and frequent episodes of nausea, followed by segmental resection of the jejunum and sigmoid colon. The patient had no relevant medical history. The surgical specimen underwent immunohistochemical staining and morphological evaluation. (3) Results: Histopathological analysis reveals a moderately homogeneous polyhedral-epithelioid and spindle cell neoplastic proliferation with a zonal discohesive pattern and extensive and focal fasciculated architecture. Twenty monoclonal antibodies were used for immunostaining, which allowed GNET to be diagnosed on the basis of the tumoral immune profile, characterized by positive reactivity of S100, SOX10, and CD 56. (4) Conclusions: The poor prognosis of GNET is highlighted in the present study, along with the vital importance of differential diagnosis issues with mesenchymal, lymphoid, and melanic tumors, which make the diagnosis difficult for both pathologists and clinicians.

Keywords: clear cell; diagnosis differential; gastrointestinal neoplasms; neuroectodermal tumors; sarcoma.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

Grants and funding

This research received no external funding.