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Ewha Med J. 2012 Mar;35(1):3-10. Korean. Review. https://doi.org/10.12771/emj.2012.35.1.3
Han JJ , Hong KS .
Department of Internal Medicine, National Rehabilitation Hospital, Seoul, Korea.
Department of Laboratory Medicine, Ewha Womans University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. kshong@ewha.ac.kr
Abstract

The incidence of thyroid cancer has been rapidly increased in Korea. Although fine needle aspiration cytology is recommended for diagnosis of cancer, there are some limitations. Patients with indeterminate or suspicious cytology category in which malignancy cannot be ruled out usually undergone a thyroidectomy, however, only 10~25% of them finally diagnosed as cancer. According to the progress in understanding molecular mechanism, some mutations or other molecular alterations have been studied for the diagnostic and prognostic markers for thyroid cancer. The majority of papillary thyroid cancers have BRAF and RAS mutations or RET/PTC rearrangement, and approximately 80% of follicular thyroid cancers harbor a RAS mutation or PAX8/PPARgamma rearrangement. These genetic alterations are mostly studied and current clinical guidelines suggested that these molecular markers may help management for patients with indeterminate cytology. In addition, recent studies demonstrated the high sensitivity and specificity of thyroid-stimulating hormone receptor mRNA in diagnosing cancer in patients with indeterminate cytology. For the detection of recurrent or residual thyroid cancer, serum thyroglobulin is the only circulating marker in clinical practice. However, it lacks sensitivity and is unreliable specifically in the presence of antibodies to thyroglobulin. Recent studies demonstrated a significant role of measuring the mRNA of thyroglobulin, thyroid peroxidase, thyroid-stimulating hormone receptor, and sodium/iodine symporter in peripheral blood for monitoring of the recurrence of thyroid cancer.

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