Lhermitte-Duclos disease: a report of 31 cases with immunohistochemical analysis of the PTEN/AKT/mTOR pathway.

Abel TW, Baker SJ, Fraser MM, Tihan T, Nelson JS, Yachnis AT, Bouffard JP, Mena H, Burger PC, Eberhart CG
J Neuropathol Exp Neurol. 2005 64 (4): 341-9

PMID: 15835270 · DOI:10.1093/jnen/64.4.341

Lhermitte-Duclos disease (LDD) is a rare cerebellar tumor associated with Cowden disease (CD) and germline mutations in the PTEN gene. To further define these relationships, we reviewed clinical and pathologic findings in 31 LDD cases and analyzed the status of the PTEN pathway in 11 of them. We hypothesized that the granule cell hypertrophy in LDD is secondary to activation of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), a downstream effector in the PTEN/AKT pathway and a major regulator of cell growth. Histopathologically, in addition to the classical findings of LDD, we observed prominent vascular proliferation and vacuolization of the white matter in many of the lesions. Four patients met diagnostic criteria for CD, and many of the remaining patients had some clinical features of CD. Immunohistochemical analysis showed high levels of phospho-AKT and phospho-S6 in the large ganglionic cells forming the lesions, indicating activation of the PTEN/AKT/mTOR pathway and suggesting a central role for mTOR in the pathogenesis of LDD. These data support recommendations for genetic testing and screening for CD in patients with LDD and suggest a novel therapy for LDD through pharmacologic inhibition of mTOR.

MeSH Terms (20)

Adolescent Adult Cerebellar Neoplasms Female Ganglioneuroma Hamartoma Syndrome, Multiple Humans Immunohistochemistry Male Middle Aged Phosphoric Monoester Hydrolases Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases Protein Kinases Proto-Oncogene Proteins Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt PTEN Phosphohydrolase Signal Transduction Thyroid Diseases TOR Serine-Threonine Kinases Tumor Suppressor Proteins

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