Papillary Kidney CarcinomaRSS

Last Updated: November 05, 2015

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What is kidney cancer?

The most common type of kidney cancer is called renal cell carcinoma. This cancer forms in the cells lining the small tubules in the kidney that filter waste from the blood and make urine. An estimated 58,240 Americans were expected to have been diagnosed with kidney cancer in 2010 and an estimated 13,040 to have died of this cancer.1 Most people with kidney cancer are usually over 55 years of age and this cancer is more common in men. When detected early, most cases of kidney cancer can be treated effectively. However, survival rates are low when the cancer has spread from the kidney to other parts of the body. View additional information on kidney cancer.

The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) will analyze two subtypes of renal cell carcinoma called clear cell carcinoma and papillary carcinoma. The identification of these subtypes of kidney cancer is based on how the cancer cells look under a microscope. Kidney clear cell carcinoma is the most common type of kidney cancer, representing approximately 92 percent of such cases. Papillary carcinoma accounts for about 8 percent.2

What have The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) researchers learned about papillary renal cell carcinoma?

TCGA researchers have:

  • Confirmed that Type 1 and Type 2 papillary renal cell carcinoma, defined by differences in the appearance of the tissue under the microscope, are also distinct in their genomic profiles
  • Identified genomic characteristics and driver events of Type 1 papillary renal cell carcinoma that may inform its diagnosis and treatment
      • 81 percent of Type 1 papillary renal cell carcinoma tumors contained an alteration in the genetic sequence or an altered copy number of the MET gene, a known contributor to cancer cell growth, angiogenesis, and metastasis
        • Type 1 papillary renal cell carcinoma may be particularly receptive to specific inhibitors of the MET pathway
  • Identified genomic characteristics and driver events of Type 2 papillary renal cell carcinoma that may inform its diagnosis and treatment
      • Type 2 papillary renal cell carcinoma was very heterogeneous, suggesting that it may be better treated according to specific genomic markers
      • One subtype, the CpG island methylation phenotype (CIMP), was found almost exclusively in Type 2 papillary carcinoma and was associated with the least favorable outcomes
      • Loss of expression of the tumor suppressor gene CDKN2A was also characteristic of Type 2 papillary carcinoma and was associated with a poor prognosis

See more about TCGA's study of papillary renal cell carcinoma  

Read the TCGA papillary renal cell carcinoma paper in the New England Journal of Medicine

Where can I find more information about the TCGA Research Network’s studies or studies using TCGA data.

View a list of TCGA scientific publications.

Where can I find cancer clinical trials to treat kidney cancers that are supported by the National Cancer Institute (NCI)?

View a list of NCI-supported kidney clear cell carcinoma clinical trials or kidney papillary carcinoma clinical trials that are now accepting patients.
 


Selected References

1American Cancer Society: Cancer Facts and Figures 2010. Atlanta, GA: American Cancer Society, 2010. The estimated number of kidney cancer new cases and deaths are a combined total for renal cell carcinoma and renal pelvis carcinoma.

2Chow W-H, Dong LM, and Devesa SS: Epidemiology and risk factors for kidney cancer. Nature Reviews Urology 7(5):245-257, 2010.