Carling Tobias,Udelsman Robert
Annual review of medicine
Thyroid cancer is rapidly increasing in incidence, but the mortality rate remains flat. Debate has arisen over the need to detect or treat most thyroid cancers early, given their favorable natural history. The appropriate extent of surgery for thyroid cancer is also controversial: some researchers advocate partial and others total thyroidectomy; some advocate prophylactic central cervical lymph node dissection, whereas others only rarely recommend lymphadenectomy. Although radioactive iodine is effective, its appropriate use and dosage remain controversial. In addition, molecular analysis of thyroid cancer is frequently used for diagnostic purposes involving preoperative fine-needle biopsy specimens as well as to define targetable pathways altered in the disease to guide clinical trials of drug therapy for advanced thyroid cancers.
Cabanillas Maria E,McFadden David G,Durante Cosimo
Lancet (London, England)
Thyroid cancer is the fifth most common cancer in women in the USA, and an estimated over 62 000 new cases occurred in men and women in 2015. The incidence continues to rise worldwide. Differentiated thyroid cancer is the most frequent subtype of thyroid cancer and in most patients the standard treatment (surgery followed by either radioactive iodine or observation) is effective. Patients with other, more rare subtypes of thyroid cancer-medullary and anaplastic-are ideally treated by physicians with experience managing these malignancies. Targeted treatments that are approved for differentiated and medullary thyroid cancers have prolonged progression-free survival, but these drugs are not curative and therefore are reserved for patients with progressive or symptomatic disease.
NADPH oxidases: new actors in thyroid cancer?
Ameziane-El-Hassani Rabii,Schlumberger Martin,Dupuy Corinne
Nature reviews. Endocrinology
Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) is a crucial substrate for thyroid peroxidase, a key enzyme involved in thyroid hormone synthesis. However, as a potent oxidant, H2O2 might also be responsible for the high level of oxidative DNA damage observed in thyroid tissues, such as DNA base lesions and strand breakages, which promote chromosomal instability and contribute to the development of tumours. Although the role of H2O2 in thyroid hormone synthesis is well established, its precise mechanisms of action in pathological processes are still under investigation. The NADPH oxidase/dual oxidase family are the only oxidoreductases whose primary function is to produce reactive oxygen species. As such, the function and expression of these enzymes are tightly regulated. Thyrocytes express dual oxidase 2, which produces most of the H2O2 for thyroid hormone synthesis. Thyrocytes also express dual oxidase 1 and NADPH oxidase 4, but the roles of these enzymes are still unknown. Here, we review the structure, expression, localization and function of these enzymes. We focus on their potential role in thyroid cancer, which is characterized by increased expression of these enzymes.
Mortality Risk Stratification by Combining BRAF V600E and TERT Promoter Mutations in Papillary Thyroid Cancer: Genetic Duet of BRAF and TERT Promoter Mutations in Thyroid Cancer Mortality.
Liu Rengyun,Bishop Justin,Zhu Guangwu,Zhang Tao,Ladenson Paul W,Xing Mingzhao
Importance:BRAF V600E and TERT promoter mutations can coexist in papillary thyroid cancer (PTC). This genetic duet was indicated to be involved in the aggressiveness of PTC, but its prognostic value in PTC-related mortality remains to be specifically established. Objective:To establish the prognostic power of this genetic duet in PTC-specific mortality. Design, Setting, and Participants:This genetic-clinical correlation study examined BRAF V600E and TERT promoter mutations (chr5:1,295,228C>T and chr5:1,295,250C>T) and PTC-specific mortality in 1051 patients (764 women and 287 men) with a median (interquartile range [IQR]) age of 46 (36-57) years, with a median (IQR) follow-up time of 89 (48-142) months (7.4 years). Main Outcomes and Measures:BRAF V600E and TERT promoter mutation patterns and associated patient deaths caused by PTC. Results:Papillary thyroid cancer-specific mortality occurred in 4 of 629 patients (0.6%) with neither mutation; 7 of 292 (2.4%) with BRAF V600E alone; 4 of 64 (6.3%) with TERT promoter mutation alone; and 15 of 66 (22.7%) with the genetic duet; and deaths per 1000-person years in patients harboring neither mutation, BRAF V600E alone, TERT mutation alone, or both mutations were 0.80 (95% CI, 0.30-2.13), 3.08 (95% CI, 1.47-6.46), 6.62 (95% CI, 2.48-17.64), and 29.86 (95% CI, 18.00-49.52), respectively. Compared with patients harboring neither mutation, HRs (95% CIs) for PTC-specific mortality were 3.08 (0.87-10.84) for BRAF V600E alone; 8.18 (2.04-32.75) with TERT mutation alone; and 37.77 (12.50-114.09) with both mutations. Papillary thyroid cancer-specific mortality for cases with both mutations remained significant (HR, 9.34; 95% CI, 2.53-34.48) after adjustment for clinicopathological factors, and the genetic duet showed a strong incremental and synergistic impact over either mutation alone. Kaplan-Meier analyses revealed a flat PTC-specific patient survival curve with neither mutation, a modest decline in the curve with either mutation alone, and a sharp decline in the curve with coexisting mutations. Even more robust mortality associations of the genetic duet were seen when only conventional-variant PTC (CPTC) was analyzed (HR, 54.46; 95% CI, 12.26-241.82), which remained strongly significant (HR, 18.56; 95% CI, 2.97-116.18) after adjustment for clinicopathological factors. Conclusions and Relevance:These results demonstrate a simple 4-genotype classification of PTC, particularly CPTC, with a disease-specific mortality risk order of the genetic duet>>>>BRAF V600E alone = TERT promoter mutation alone > wild-type for both genes, representing a powerful molecular prognostic system that can help pinpoint patients with the highest mortality risk.
Follicular cell-derived thyroid cancer.
Dralle Henning,Machens Andreas,Basa Johanna,Fatourechi Vahab,Franceschi Silvia,Hay Ian D,Nikiforov Yuri E,Pacini Furio,Pasieka Janice L,Sherman Steven I
Nature reviews. Disease primers
Follicular cell-derived thyroid cancers are derived from the follicular cells in the thyroid gland, which secrete the iodine-containing thyroid hormones. Follicular cell-derived thyroid cancers can be classified into papillary thyroid cancer (80-85%), follicular thyroid cancer (10-15%), poorly differentiated thyroid cancer (<2%) and undifferentiated (anaplastic) thyroid cancer (<2%), and these have an excellent prognosis with the exception of undifferentiated thyroid cancer. The advent and expansion of advanced diagnostic techniques has driven and continues to drive the epidemic of occult papillary thyroid cancer, owing to overdiagnosis of clinically irrelevant nodules. This transformation of the thyroid cancer landscape at molecular and clinical levels calls for the modification of management strategies towards personalized medicine based on individual risk assessment to deliver the most effective but least aggressive treatment. In thyroid cancer surgery, for instance, injuries to structures outside the thyroid gland, such as the recurrent laryngeal nerve in 2-5% of surgeries or the parathyroid glands in 5-10% of surgeries, negatively affect quality of life more than loss of the expendable thyroid gland. Furthermore, the risks associated with radioiodine ablation may outweigh the risks of persistent or recurrent disease and disease-specific mortality. Improvement in the health-related quality of life of survivors of follicular cell-derived thyroid cancer, which is decreased despite the generally favourable outcome, hinges on early tumour detection and minimization of treatment-related sequelae. Future opportunities include more widespread adoption of molecular and clinical risk stratification and identification of actionable targets for individualized therapies.
Anaplastic thyroid carcinoma: from clinicopathology to genetics and advanced therapies.
Molinaro Eleonora,Romei Cristina,Biagini Agnese,Sabini Elena,Agate Laura,Mazzeo Salvatore,Materazzi Gabriele,Sellari-Franceschini Stefano,Ribechini Alessandro,Torregrossa Liborio,Basolo Fulvio,Vitti Paolo,Elisei Rossella
Nature reviews. Endocrinology
Anaplastic thyroid carcinoma (ATC) is a rare malignancy, accounting for 1-2% of all thyroid cancers. Although rare, ATC accounts for the majority of deaths from thyroid carcinoma. ATC often originates in a pre-existing thyroid cancer lesion, as suggested by the simultaneous presence of areas of differentiated or poorly differentiated thyroid carcinoma. ATC is characterized by the accumulation of several oncogenic alterations, and studies have shown that an increased number of oncogenic alterations equates to an increased level of dedifferentiation and aggressiveness. The clinical management of ATC requires a multidisciplinary approach; according to recent American Thyroid Association guidelines, surgery, radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy should be considered. In addition to conventional therapies, novel molecular targeted therapies are the most promising emerging treatment modalities. These drugs are often multiple receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors, several of which have been tested in clinical trials with encouraging results so far. Accordingly, clinical trials are ongoing to evaluate the safety, efficacy and effectiveness of these new agents. This Review describes the updated clinical and pathological features of ATC and provides insight into the molecular biology of this disease. The most recent literature regarding conventional, newly available and future therapies for ATC is also discussed.
Differentiated and anaplastic thyroid carcinoma: Major changes in the American Joint Committee on Cancer eighth edition cancer staging manual.
Perrier Nancy D,Brierley James D,Tuttle R Michael
CA: a cancer journal for clinicians
Answer questions and earn CME/CNE This is a review of the major changes in the American Joint Committee on Cancer staging manual, eighth edition, for differentiated and anaplastic thyroid carcinoma. All patients younger than 55 years have stage I disease unless they have distant metastases, in which case, their disease is stage II. In patients aged 55 years or older, the presence of distant metastases confers stage IVB, while cases without distant metastases are further categorized based on the presence/absence of gross extrathyroidal extension, tumor size, and lymph node status. Patients aged 55 years or older whose tumor measures 4 cm or smaller (T1-T2) and is confined to the thyroid (N0, NX) have stage I disease, and those whose tumor measures greater than 4 cm and is confined to the thyroid (T3a) have stage II disease regardless of lymph node status. Patients aged 55 years or older whose tumor is confined to the thyroid and measures 4 cm or smaller (T1-T2) with any lymph node metastases present (N1a or N1b) have stage II disease. In patients who demonstrate gross extrathyroidal extension, the disease is considered stage II if only the strap muscles are grossly invaded (T3b); stage III if there is gross invasion of the subcutaneous tissue, larynx, trachea, esophagus, or recurrent laryngeal nerve (T4a); or stage IVA if there is gross invasion of the prevertebral fascia or tumor encasing the carotid artery or internal jugular vein (T4b). The same T definitions will be used for both differentiated and anaplastic thyroid cancer, but the basic premise of the anatomic stage groups will remain the same. CA Cancer J Clin 2018;68:55-63. © 2017 American Cancer Society.
Controversies in the Management of Low-Risk Differentiated Thyroid Cancer.
Haymart Megan R,Esfandiari Nazanene H,Stang Michael T,Sosa Julia Ann
Controversy exists over optimal management of low-risk differentiated thyroid cancer. This controversy occurs in all aspects of management, including surgery, use of radioactive iodine for remnant ablation, thyroid hormone supplementation, and long-term surveillance. Limited and conflicting data, treatment paradigm shifts, and differences in physician perceptions contribute to the controversy. This lack of physician consensus results in wide variation in patient care, with some patients at risk for over- or undertreatment. To reduce patient harm and unnecessary worry, there is a need to design and implement studies to address current knowledge gaps.
Follicular thyroid cancer and Hürthle cell carcinoma: challenges in diagnosis, treatment, and clinical management.
Grani Giorgio,Lamartina Livia,Durante Cosimo,Filetti Sebastiano,Cooper David S
The lancet. Diabetes & endocrinology
Follicular thyroid cancer is the second most common differentiated thyroid cancer histological type and has been overshadowed by its more common counterpart-papillary thyroid cancer-despite its unique biological behaviour and less favourable outcomes. In this Review, we comprehensively review the literature on follicular thyroid cancer to provide an evidence-based guide to the management of these tumours, to highlight the lack of evidence behind guideline recommendations, and to identify changes and challenges over the past decades in diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment. We highlight that correct identification of cancer in indeterminate cytological samples is challenging and ultrasonographic features can be misleading. Despite certain unique aspects of follicular thyroid cancer presentation and prognosis, no specific recommendations exist for follicular thyroid cancer and Hürthle cell carcinoma in evidence-based guidelines. Efforts should be made to stimulate additional research in this field.
Thyroid surgery for differentiated thyroid cancer - recent advances and future directions.
Wang Tracy S,Sosa Julie Ann
Nature reviews. Endocrinology
Population-based studies have demonstrated that an increasing number of incidental thyroid nodules are being identified. The corresponding increase in thyroid-based diagnostic procedures, such as fine-needle aspiration biopsy, has in part led to an increase in the diagnoses of thyroid cancers and to more thyroid surgeries being performed. Small papillary thyroid cancers account for most of this increase in diagnoses. These cancers are considered to be low risk because of the excellent patient outcomes, with a 5-year disease-specific survival of >98%. As a result, controversy remains regarding the optimal management of newly diagnosed differentiated thyroid cancer, as the complications related to thyroidectomy (primarily recurrent laryngeal nerve injury and hypoparathyroidism) have considerable effects on patient quality of life. This Review highlights current debates, including undertaking active surveillance versus thyroid surgery for papillary thyroid microcarcinoma, the extent of thyroid surgery and lymphadenectomy for low-risk differentiated thyroid cancer, and the use of molecular testing to guide decision-making about whether surgery is required and the extent of the initial operation. This Review includes a discussion of current consensus guideline recommendations regarding these topics in patients with differentiated thyroid cancer. Additionally, innovative thyroidectomy techniques (including robotic and transoral approaches) are discussed, with an emphasis on patient preferences around decision-making and outcomes following thyroidectomy.
Geographic influences in the global rise of thyroid cancer.
Kim Jina,Gosnell Jessica E,Roman Sanziana A
Nature reviews. Endocrinology
The incidence of thyroid cancer is on the rise, and this disease is projected to become the fourth leading type of cancer across the globe. From 1990 to 2013, the global age-standardized incidence rate of thyroid cancer increased by 20%. This global rise in incidence has been attributed to several factors, including increased detection of early tumours, the elevated prevalence of modifiable individual risk factors (for example, obesity) and increased exposure to environmental risk factors (for example, iodine levels). In this Review, we explore proven and novel hypotheses for how modifiable risk factors and environmental exposures might be driving the worldwide increase in the incidence of thyroid cancer. Although overscreening and the increased diagnosis of possibly clinically insignificant disease might have a role in certain parts of the world, other areas could be experiencing a true increase in incidence due to elevated exposure risks. In the current era of personalized medicine, national and international registry data should be applied to identify populations who are at increased risk for the development of thyroid cancer.
Incidence and Mortality Risk Spectrum Across Aggressive Variants of Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma.
Ho Allen S,Luu Michael,Barrios Laurel,Chen Irene,Melany Michelle,Ali Nabilah,Patio Chrysanta,Chen Yufei,Bose Shikha,Fan Xuemo,Mallen-St Clair Jon,Braunstein Glenn D,Sacks Wendy L,Zumsteg Zachary S
Importance:While well-differentiated papillary thyroid carcinoma (WDPTC) outcomes have been well characterized, the prognostic implications of more aggressive variants are far less defined. The rarity of these subtypes has led to their consolidation as intermediate risk for what are in fact likely heterogeneous diseases. Objective:To analyze incidence, clinicopathologic characteristics, and outcomes for aggressive variants of papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC). Design, Setting, and Participants:This cohort study used data from 2000 to 2016 from hospital-based and population-based US cancer registries to analyze aggressive PTC variants, including diffuse sclerosing (DSV), tall-cell (TCV), insular, and poorly differentiated (PDTC) subtypes. These variants were compared against WDPTC and anaplastic cases. Data analysis was conducted from January 2019 to October 2019. Main Outcomes and Measures:Age-adjusted incidence was calculated via annual percentage change (APC) using the weighted least-squares method. Overall survival and disease-specific survival were analyzed via Cox regression. Propensity-score matching was used to adjust survival analyses for clinical and demographic covariates. Results:Collectively, 5447 aggressive PTC variants were identified (including 415 DSV, 3339 TCV, 362 insular, and 1331 PDTC cases), as well as 35 812 WDPTC and 2249 anaplastic cases. Over the study period, a substantial increase in aggressive variant incidence was observed (APC, 9.1 [95% CI, 7.33-10.89]; P < .001), surpassing the relative increases observed in WDPTC (APC, 5.1 [95% CI, 3.98-6.12]; P < .001) and anaplastic cases (APC, 1.9 [95% CI, 0.75-3.05]; P = .003; parallelism P < .007). Survival varied markedly based on histologic subtype, with a wide spectrum of mortality risk noted; 10-year overall survival was 85.4% (95% CI, 84.6%-86.3%) in WDPTC, 79.2% (95% CI, 73.6%-85.3%) in DSV, 71.9% (95% CI, 68.4%-75.6%) in TCV, 45.1% (95% CI, 40.2%-50.6%) in PDTC, 27.9% (95% CI, 20.0%-38.9%) in the insular variant, and 8.9% (95% CI, 7.5%-10.6%) in anaplastic cases (P < .001). These differences largely persisted even after adjusting for inherent differences in baseline characteristics by multivariable Cox regression and propensity-score matching. Conclusions and Relevance:An upsurge in aggressive PTC incidence was observed at a rate beyond that seen in WDPTC or anaplastic thyroid carcinoma. Moreover, long-term survival outcomes for aggressive PTC subgroups exhibit heterogeneous clinical behavior and a wide range of mortality risk, suggesting that treatment should be tailored to specific histologic subtypes. Given increasing prevalence and disparate outcomes, further investigation to identify optimal therapeutic strategies is needed in these diverse, understudied populations.
Screening for differentiated thyroid cancer in selected populations.
Lamartina Livia,Grani Giorgio,Durante Cosimo,Filetti Sebastiano,Cooper David S
The lancet. Diabetes & endocrinology
The main purpose of cancer screening programmes should not be to detect all cancers, but to discover potentially fatal or clinically relevant cancers. The US Preventive Services Task Force recommends against screening for thyroid cancer in the general, asymptomatic adult population, as such screening would result in harms that outweigh any potential benefits. This recommendation does not apply to patients with symptoms or to individuals at increased risk of thyroid cancer because of a history of exposure to ionising radiation (in childhood, as radioactive fallout, or in medical treatment as low-dose radiotherapy for benign conditions or high-dose radiation for malignancy), inherited genetic syndromes associated with thyroid cancer (eg, familial adenomatous polyposis), or one or more first-degree relatives with a history of thyroid cancer. We discuss the evidence for and against screening individuals who are at high risk, and consider the different screening tools available.
Evaluation of Overall Survival in Patients With Anaplastic Thyroid Carcinoma, 2000-2019.
Maniakas Anastasios,Dadu Ramona,Busaidy Naifa L,Wang Jennifer R,Ferrarotto Renata,Lu Charles,Williams Michelle D,Gunn G Brandon,Hofmann Marie-Claude,Cote Gilbert,Sperling Jared,Gross Neil D,Sturgis Erich M,Goepfert Ryan P,Lai Stephen Y,Cabanillas Maria E,Zafereo Mark
Importance:Anaplastic thyroid carcinoma (ATC) historically has a 4-month median overall survival (OS) from time of diagnosis, with disease-specific mortality approaching 100%. The association between recent major advancements in treatment and OS has yet to be evaluated. Objective:To evaluate rates of OS in patients with ATC over the last 2 decades. Design, Setting, and Participants:Retrospective cohort study in a single tertiary care institution. Patients with histopathological confirmation of ATC from January 2000 to October 2019 were included and divided into 3 groups according to date of presentation: 2000-2013, 2014-2016, and 2017-2019. Main Outcomes and Measures:Overall survival compared among different treatment eras and differing therapies, including targeted therapy, immunotherapy, and surgery. Results:Of 479 patients (246 men [51%]; median age, 65.0 [range, 21.1-92.6] years) with ATC evaluated, 52 (11%) were stage IVA, 172 (36%) stage IVB, and 255 (53%) stage IVC at presentation. The median OS of the entire cohort was 0.79 years (9.5 months), ranging from 0.01 to 16.63. The OS at 1 and 2 years was 35% (95% CI, 29%-42%) and 18% (95% CI, 13%-23%) in the 2000-2013 group (n = 227), 47% (95% CI, 36%-56%) and 25% (95% CI, 17%-34%) in the 2014-2016 group (n = 100), and 59% (95% CI, 49%-67%) and 42% (95% CI, 30%-53%) in the 2017-2019 group (n = 152), respectively (P < .001). The hazard ratio was 0.50 (95% CI, 0.38-0.67) for the 2017-2019 group compared with the 2000-2013 patients (P < .001). Factors associated with improved OS included targeted therapy (hazard ratio, 0.49; 95% CI, 0.39-0.63; P < .001), the addition of immunotherapy to targeted therapy (hazard ratio, 0.58; 95% CI, 0.36-0.94; P = .03), and surgery following neoadjuvant BRAF-directed therapy (hazard ratio, 0.29; 95% CI, 0.10-0.78; P = .02). Patients undergoing surgery following neoadjuvant BRAF-directed therapy (n = 20) had a 94% 1-year survival with a median follow-up of 1.21 years. Conclusion and Relevance:In this large single-institution cohort study spanning nearly 20 years, changes in patient management appear to be associated with significant increase in survival. The era of untreatable ATC is progressively being replaced by molecular-based personalized therapies, with integration of multidisciplinary therapies including surgery and radiation therapy.
Targeted Therapy for Advanced Thyroid Cancer: Kinase Inhibitors and Beyond.
Cabanillas Maria E,Ryder Mabel,Jimenez Camilo
The treatment of advanced thyroid cancer has undergone rapid evolution in the last decade, with multiple kinase inhibitor drug approvals for each subtype of thyroid cancer and a number of other commercially available drugs that have been studied for this indication. Although most of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved drugs are antiangiogenic multikinase inhibitors-vandetanib, cabozantinib, sorafenib, lenvatinib-there are two FDA indications that are mutation specific-dabrafenib/trametinib for BRAF-mutated anaplastic thyroid cancer and larotrectinib for NTRK-fusion thyroid cancer. Furthermore, other mutation-specific drugs, immunotherapies, and novel strategies for advanced thyroid cancer are under investigation. Understanding the molecular basis of thyroid cancer, the drugs of interest for treatment of advanced thyroid cancer, and how these drugs can be administered safely and in the appropriate clinical scenario are the topics of this review.
Contemporary Debates in Adult Papillary Thyroid Cancer Management.
McLeod Donald S A,Zhang Ling,Durante Cosimo,Cooper David S
An ever-increasing population of patients with papillary thyroid cancer is engaging with health care systems around the world. Numerous questions about optimal management have arisen that challenge conventional paradigms. This is particularly the case for patients with low-risk disease, who comprise most new patients. At the same time, new therapies for patients with advanced disease are also being introduced, which may have the potential to prolong life. This review discusses selected controversial issues in adult papillary thyroid cancer management at both ends of the disease spectrum. These topics include: (i) the role of active surveillance for small papillary cancers; (ii) the extent of surgery in low-risk disease (lobectomy vs total thyroidectomy); (iii) the role of postoperative remnant ablation with radioiodine; (iv) optimal follow-up strategies in patients, especially those who have only undergone lobectomy; and (v) new therapies for advanced disease. Although our current management is hampered by the lack of large randomized controlled trials, we are fortunate that data from ongoing trials will be available within the next few years. This information should provide additional evidence that will decrease morbidity in low-risk patients and improve outcomes in those with distant metastatic disease.