The prevalence of pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia in pancreata with uncommon types of primary neoplasms

Edward B. Stelow*, Reid B. Adams, Christopher A. Moskaluk

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma is thought to develop through a series of genetic events through its purported precursor lesion, pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia (PanIN). Little, however, is known regarding the role of possible precursor lesions in the development of other primary neoplasms of the pancreas. This study investigated the prevalence of PanIN, as defined by recent consensus statements, in pancreata with uncommon types of primary neoplasms. All pancreata resected at the University of Virginia from June 1, 1991 to March 1, 2005 for neoplasia not diagnosed as conventional ductal adenocarcinoma were reviewed and classified according to the World Health Organization's classification schema for tumors of the exocrine and endocrine pancreas. All slides from these cases were then assessed for PanIN, which was classified according to the criteria of the most recent consensus statement. Three acinar cell carcinomas (ACCs), 18 mucinous cystic neoplasms (MCNs), 24 pancreatic endocrine tumors (PETs), 12 serous cystadenomas (SCs), and 3 solid-pseudopapillary tumors (SPTs) were identified. PanIN was identified in the pancreata of 3 of 3 ACCs, 17 of 18 MCNs, 16 of 24 PETs, 10 of 12 SCs, and 2 of 3 SPTs. The degree of PanIN was noted to trend with patient age. Although the high prevalence of PanIN in pancreata concomitantly harboring certain uncommon neoplasms of the pancreas could signify its role as a precursor lesion for those neoplasms, its high prevalence throughout our series may simply be the result of a coincidental, prevalent finding seen in all pancreata, especially with aging. Because of the ubiquitous nature of PanIN, it should not be used histologically to assist in the diagnosis and subclassification of pancreatic neoplasia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)36-41
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Surgical Pathology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Acinar cell carcinoma
  • Mucinous cystic neoplasm
  • Pancreas
  • Pancreatic endocrine tumor
  • Pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia
  • Serous cystadenoma
  • Solid-pseudopapillary tumor


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