Aims: To clarify the association of p53 and CD34 expression with development of malignant solitary fibrous tumour we have studied 10 cases of solitary fibrous tumour arising in the pleura, retroperitoneum and pelvic cavity with clinicopathological features of malignancy. Methods and results: Tumours were localized solid masses with or without necrosis in eight and they nearly totally occupied the pleura[ cavity in two. Basic histology of the tumours was the proliferation of spindle cells arranged in 'patternless' pattern or in interlacing bundles with nuclear atypia and mitotic activities of various degree. In two, high-grade loci were present within low or intermediate-grade tumours. Recurrent tumours also showed more atypical features than primary tumours in two. Immunohistochemical studies showed CD34 positivity in seven, but three of them showed marked diminution or complete loss of CD34 expression in high-grade loci or a recurrent tumour. Three high- grade cases showed totally negative staining for CD34. p53 was strongly expressed in cases with fatal outcome, clinical recurrence, nuclear atypia, high mitotic activity or local invasion, whereas almost negative in benign tumours. Conclusions: Malignant solitary fibrous tumours may occur de novo or by transformation within benign or low-grade tumours and may be associated with p53 mutation. Although CD34 is a useful marker in the diagnosis of solitary fibrous tumour, one should bear in mind that its expression can be lost in high-grade tumours.
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