Category Archives: Carcinoma of thyroid

The first three cases of thyroid secretory carcinoma, formerly MASC

Marino Leon of the  Head and Neck Oncology Program at the  H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute in Tampa led a multi center team to describe the “first three” cases of thyroid secretory carcinoma. Jennifer Dettloff was first author on this 2017 report. The “first three cases” of thyroid secretory carcinoma are actually one previously reported case plus two more.

In the previous report Stevens and coworkers (2015) reported

  • 10 cases of secretory carcinoma of the salivary glands
  • two from the lips
  • one from the hard palate,  and
  • one from the thyroid gland.  The thyroid secretory carcinoma came from a 55 year old female.
Table showing clinical and pathological findings of 3 patients.

Table 1, first half, Dettloff 2016.  RUL, right upper thyroid lobe; hpf, high power field

A thyroid cancer with PTC and MASC components

Colombians Paula Rodrıguez-Urrego MD and Snjezana Dogan MD collaborated with Oscar Lin, MD of the  Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center Department of Pathology. They presented a  report of a 47 year old man who presented for what appeared to papillary thyroid carcinoma and was treated accordingly. In this post secretory carcinoma of the thyroid will be referred to as “MASC” simply to stay consistent with with the publication.

Why testing even old tumor blocks matters

Over a decade later, a tumor “came back” a second time. Closer examination of the old FFPE preserved tumor revealed a growth that had both PTC and MASC components. The recurrence resembled MASC. Cytological and histological differentiation of  MASC from other thyroid neoplasms is necessary to lead the oncologist to the optimal treatment. Thyroid MASCs are unlikely to respond to radioactive iodine and may not be associated with serum thyroglobulin levels. Patients diagnosed with MASC may be eligible for targeted treatment with Trk inhibitors in an open clinical trial.