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J Intern Med. 2009 Jul;266(1):1-4. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2796.2009.02108.x.

Multiple endocrine neoplasias: advances and challenges for the future.

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1
Endocrine Unit, Evgenideion Hospital and Department Medical Therapeutics, Alexandra Hospital, Athens University School of Medicine, 80, Vassilissis Sofias Ave, Athens 11528, Greece. mani@otenet.gr

Abstract

Several important advances have been made over the last 2 years, since the last international workshop on multiple endocrine neoplasias (MENs) that was held in Marseilles, France (MEN2006). The series of articles that are included in this issue summarize the most important of these advances as they were presented in Delphi, Greece, during the 11th International Workshop on MENs, September 25-27, 2008 (MEN2008). This editorial summarizes some of these advances: the identification of the AIP, and the PDE11A and PDE8B genes by genome-wide association (GWA) studies as predisposing genes for pituitary and adrenal tumours, respectively, the discovery of p27 mutations in a new form of MEN similar to MEN type 1 (MEN 1) that is now known as MEN 4, the molecular investigations of Carney triad (CT), a disorder that associates paragangliomas (PGLs), gastrointestinal stromal tumour (GISTs), and pulmonary chondromas (PCH) with pheochromocytomas and adrenocortical adenomas and other lesions, and the molecular elucidation of the association of GISTs with paragangliomas (Carney-Stratakis syndrome) that is now known to be because of SDHB, SDHC, and SDHD mutations. Molecular investigations in Carney complex (another MEN also described by Dr. Carney, who during the meeting, along with Dr. Charles E. ('Gene') Jackson was honoured for his life-long and many contributions to the field) have also revealed the role of cyclic AMP signalling in tumorigenesis. As our knowledge of the molecular causes of MENs increases, the challenge is to translate these discoveries in better treatments for our patients. Indeed, new advances in the preventive diagnosis and molecular treatment of MEN 1 and MEN 2, respectively, continued unabated, and an update on this front was also presented at MEN2008 and is included in this issue.

PMID:
19522821
PMCID:
PMC3138202
DOI:
10.1111/j.1365-2796.2009.02108.x
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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