Independent origin of multiple foci of prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia: comparison with matched foci of prostate carcinoma

Cancer. 1998 Nov 1;83(9):1995-2002. doi: 10.1002/(sici)1097-0142(19981101)83:9<1995::aid-cncr16>;2-2.


Background: Prostate carcinoma usually is heterogeneous and multifocal, with diverse clinical and morphologic manifestations. Understanding of the molecular basis for this heterogeneity is limited, particularly for the putative precursor, high grade prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia (PIN). In this study, the authors attempted to determine the genetic relation between multiple foci of PIN and matched foci of carcinoma, and whether they are independent in origin.

Methods: The distribution and prevalence of allelic imbalance at 6 microsatellite polymorphic markers on chromosomes 7q, 8p, 8q, and 18q were examined in 84 microscopically excised PIN foci (mean, 1.6 foci/case) and 95 foci of prostate carcinoma (mean, 1.8 foci/case) from 52 completely embedded, mapped whole mount prostates.

Results: PIN contained a lower overall proportion of allelic imbalance than matched prostate carcinoma foci for the 6 polymorphic microsatellite markers (65% vs. 82%), but this difference was not significant. The rate of allelic imbalance in PIN was similar to that in prostate carcinoma at 5 of 6 loci studied; the exception, D18S34 (18q12.2-12.3), had a significantly lower rate of allelic imbalance in PIN than in prostate carcinoma (19% vs. 52%), suggesting that genetic alterations in this chromosomal region may be important in carcinogenesis. Of 22 cases with allelic imbalance in at least 1 focus of PIN and 1 focus of prostate carcinoma, 21 informative cases (95%) showed a similar pattern of allelic imbalance at > or = 1 markers in the matched PIN and prostate carcinoma foci. Significant genetic heterogeneity was observed in both PIN and prostate carcinoma. Allelic imbalance was observed in at least 1 focus in 11 of 25 cases with multiple foci of PIN (44%) and 20 of 25 cases with multiple foci of prostate carcinoma (80%). There was no significant correlation between allelic imbalance and pathologic stage or tumor grade.

Conclusions: Our findings indicate that multiple foci of PIN arise independently within the same prostate. This observation suggests that a field effect underlies prostatic neoplasia. Multiple foci of prostate carcinoma also often arise independently, lending additional support for this hypothesis. The strong genetic similarities between PIN and prostate carcinoma strongly suggest that evolution and clonal expansion of PIN may account for the multifocal etiology of carcinomas.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Controlled Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Alleles
  • Carcinoma / genetics*
  • Carcinoma / pathology
  • Genetic Heterogeneity
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / pathology