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Mod Pathol. 2001 Jun;14(6):543-8.

Microsatellite instability in double primary cancers of the colorectum and stomach.

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  • 1Department of Pathology, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


Little is known about genetic alterations of patients who present multiple primary cancers. We hypothesized that microsatellite instability (MSI) is one of the underlying genetic factors in the development of double primary cancers in colorectal cancer patients. We examined for MSI in 41 colorectal cancer patients who presented with extra-colonic primary cancers consisted of 17 gastric and 24 non-gastric cancers. Coincident MSI+ in tumors of two organs were observed in 3 (17.7%) of 17 patients with colon and stomach cancers and 0 of 24 patients with colon and non-gastric cancers (P =.03). In 17 patients with colon and stomach cancers, 6 (31.6%) of 19 colon cancers and 3 (17.7%) of 17 gastric cancers exhibited MSI+. Among four patients with metachronous colon cancers who were identified within the 41 double primary cancer patients, two patients were associated with the MSI+ phenotype. In summary, the prevalent coincidence of MSI suggests that genetic defect of mismatch repair deficiency may be responsible for a small subset of double primary cancers of the colorectum and stomach.

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