Malignant Mesothelioma, BAP1 Immunohistochemistry, and VEGFA: Does BAP1 Have Potential for Early Diagnosis and Assessment of Prognosis?
Henderson, Douglas W
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Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is an aggressive malignancy of the serosal membranes. Early diagnosis and accurate prognostication remain problematic. BAP1 is a tumour suppressor gene commonly mutated in MM. Germline BAP1 mutation has been associated with early onset and less aggressive disease compared with sporadic MM. Sporadic BAP1 mutations are common and are associated with improved survival in MM, contrary to other malignancies. This study investigated the prognostic role of BAP1 in matched cytology and surgical specimens and aimed to investigate the association between BAP1 and the established prognostic marker VEGFA from a cohort of 81 patients. BAP1 mutation was found in 58% of histology and 59% of cytology specimens. Loss of BAP1 expression in both surgical and cytology specimens was significantly associated with poorer survival in a multivariate analysis when controlling for known prognostic indicators. Increased levels of VEGFA in pleural effusions were associated with poor survival. We conclude that the prognostic significance of BAP1 mutations in MM cannot be determined in isolation of other prognostic factors, which may vary between patients. Pathologists should employ caution when commenting on prognostic implications of BAP1 status of MM patients in diagnostic pathology reports, but it may be useful for early diagnosis.