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SSTR2a is constantly expressed in lymphoepithelioma-like carcinoma with squamous differentiation other than that with glandular differentiation
  1. LiLi Tao1,
  2. Yaoli Chen1,
  3. Yuhua Huang2,3,
  4. Weihua Yin1,
  5. Guangyin Yu1
  1. 1 Department of Pathology, Peking University Shenzhen Hospital, Shenzhen, Guangdong, China
  2. 2 Department of pathology, State Key Laboratory of Oncology in South China, Collaborative Innovation Center for Cancer Medicine, Guangzhou, Guangdong, China
  3. 3 Department of Pathology, Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center, Guangzhou, Guangdong, China
  1. Correspondence to Dr Yuhua Huang, Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center, Guangzhou, 510060, Guangdong, China; huangyh{at}


Aims Somatostatin receptor 2a (SSTR2a) is an important diagnostic marker of meningioma and neuroendocrine tumours and is frequently expressed in primary and metastatic non-keratinising nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NK-NPC). Since NK-NPC cases are considered a kind of lymphoepithelioma-like carcinoma (LELCs) which originate from the nasopharynx, information on the expression profile of SSTR2a in LELC in other sites with squamous and glandular differentiations is still lacking. This study aimed to assess the expression of SSTR2a in LELC of various organs and clarify its expression profile.

Methods Expression of SSTR2a in 164 cases of LELC was retrospectively analysed by immunohistochemistry in paraffin-embedded tissues, including 146 cases of LELC with squamous differentiation (120 cases of the nasopharynx, 21 cases of the lung and 5 cases of the parotid gland) and 18 cases of LELC with glandular differentiation (15 cases of the stomach and 3 cases of the liver).

Results We found that all (100%) cases of LELC of the lung (21/21) and parotid gland (5/5), and 93.3% (112/120) cases of LELC of the nasopharynx showed a diffused and strong expression of SSTR2a, while cases of gastric (0/15) and biliary (0/3) showed no SSTR2a expression.

Conclusion SSTR2a is constantly expressed in LELC with squamous differentiation, but not expressed in LELC with glandular differentiation. However, the selective expression mechanism of SSTR2a remains unknown, which needs further investigation. Our novel findings might provide potential therapeutic approaches for the treatment of LELC with squamous cell differentiation.

  • carcinoma
  • immunohistochemistry
  • viruses

Data availability statement

All data relevant to the study are included in the article,there are no contradictory statements.

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Data availability statement

All data relevant to the study are included in the article,there are no contradictory statements.

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  • Handling editor Runjan Chetty.

  • YH and WY contributed equally.

  • Contributors LT performed interpretation of the data and drafted the manuscript. YC and GY performed hematoxylin and eosin and immunohistochemical, EBER-ISH staining. WY performed histological and immunohistochemical analysis. YH conceived the study, participated in its design and coordination and drafted the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

  • Funding This project was funded by grants from the Science and Technology Program of Guangdong (no. 2017116204155117), the Medical Science and Technology Foundation of Guangdong Province (A2018001), the Natural Science Foundation of Guangdong Province (2018A030313663), and the fund of the 'San-ming' Project of Medicine in Shenzhen (no. SZSM201812088).

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer-reviewed.