Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is a rare cutaneous neuroendocrine carcinoma of uncertain origin. MCC incidence varies by country and has been increasing among white populations over the last three decades. MCC occurs most commonly in elderly men and typically arises on sun-exposed areas. It is associated with a high mortality rate due to rapid growth and significant metastatic potential. Clinical and histopathological diagnosis are challenging, but prompt recognition of the disease is imperative for a correct management. Several hypotheses have been proposed to define the cell of origin, which still remains controversial. The discovery of Merkel cell polyoma virus, identified in the majority of MCCs, led to the hypothesis of the existence of two tumour subtypes showing biological, clinico-pathological and prognostic differences. Significant interest is nowadays directed to characterize MCC genomic alterations and microRNA (miRNA) expression profiles. Current treatment strategies for MCC depend on staging, and typically consist of surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy and/or, more recently, immunotherapy. The aim of this review is to provide an updated overview of MCC with a special focus on clinico-pathological aspects, molecular-genetics and therapy.

Merkel cell carcinoma: an updated overview of clinico-pathological aspects, molecular genetics and therapy

Pellegrini C.;Ventura A.;Cardelli L.;Fargnoli M. C.
2021

Abstract

Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is a rare cutaneous neuroendocrine carcinoma of uncertain origin. MCC incidence varies by country and has been increasing among white populations over the last three decades. MCC occurs most commonly in elderly men and typically arises on sun-exposed areas. It is associated with a high mortality rate due to rapid growth and significant metastatic potential. Clinical and histopathological diagnosis are challenging, but prompt recognition of the disease is imperative for a correct management. Several hypotheses have been proposed to define the cell of origin, which still remains controversial. The discovery of Merkel cell polyoma virus, identified in the majority of MCCs, led to the hypothesis of the existence of two tumour subtypes showing biological, clinico-pathological and prognostic differences. Significant interest is nowadays directed to characterize MCC genomic alterations and microRNA (miRNA) expression profiles. Current treatment strategies for MCC depend on staging, and typically consist of surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy and/or, more recently, immunotherapy. The aim of this review is to provide an updated overview of MCC with a special focus on clinico-pathological aspects, molecular-genetics and therapy.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11697/182262
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