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1.  Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor of Stomach 
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) is an extremely uncommon, highly aggressive, and malignant mesenchymal neoplasm of undetermined histogenesis. Less than 200 case reports have been documented in literature so far. Herein, we report a 26-year-old otherwise healthy female patient who presented with a 1-month history of epigastric pain. On physical examination, a palpable, slightly mobile, and tender epigastric mass was detected. All laboratory tests were normal. A chest, abdominal, and pelvic contrast-enhanced computed tomography (CT) scans showed a 3.8 × 7.2 × 8.7 cm ill-defined mass, involving gastric fundus and extending into gastric cardia and lower gastroesophageal junction. It was associated with multiple enlarged gastrohepatic lymph nodes; the largest measured 1.2 cm. There was no evidence of ascites or retroperitoneal or mesenteric lymphatic metastases. Patient underwent total gastrectomy with D2 lymphadenectomy, splenectomy, and antecolic Roux-en-Y esophagojejunal anastomosis. Histopathological examination revealed coexpression of mesenchymal, epithelial, and neural markers. The characteristic chromosomal translocation (t(11; 22)(p13; q12)) was demonstrated on fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) technique. Diagnosis of DSRCT of stomach was confirmed. Patient received no postoperative radiotherapy or chemotherapy. A postoperative 3-month followup failed to show any recurrence. In addition, a literature review on DSRCT is included.
PMCID: PMC3690222  PMID: 23840979
2.  A case of long-term survival of metastatic desmoplastic small round cell tumor treated with multimodal therapy 
Oncology Letters  2011;3(1):30-34.
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) is a rare, aggressive and malignant tumor that predominantly affects young males. No standard therapy is currently available for patients with DSRCT and the prognosis remains extremely poor. In this study, we report a thought-provoking DSRCT case. A 24-year-old male was admitted to our hospital with a chief complaint of hematemesis. Computed tomography revealed a retrovesical mass with a splenic hilar tumor, multiple lung and liver tumors and marked lymph node swellings. The source of hematemesis was gastric varices caused by the compression of the splenic vein by a splenic hilar tumor. The patient was provided with a histological diagnosis of DSRCT based on needle biopsy from the liver tumors and the pelvic mass was thought to be the primary lesion. This is a long-term survival case of metastatic DSRCT treated with multimodal therapy including 15 courses of multiagent chemotherapy, radiation therapy for the hepatic portal region using 42.5 Gy, and four instances of therapeutic endoscopy. The prolonged progression-free survival period (15 months) obtained following chemotherapy suggests the chemosensitive feature of the disease. We used a modified P6 regimen (cyclophosphamide, pirarubicin, vincristine, ifosfamide and etoposide) and a modified PAVEP regimen (cyclophosphamide, pirarubicin, etoposide and cisplatin) to decrease severe adverse events and to improve the completion rate of chemotherapy. DSRCT is an aggressive but chemo-sensitive disease, and continuous chemotherapy using an appropriate regimen with possible supportive care is essential for long-term survival. This case report may represent a treatment option for this rare disease.
PMCID: PMC3362338  PMID: 22740851
desmoplastic small round cell tumor; multimodal therapy; P6 regimen; PAVEP regimen
3.  Testicular desmoplastic small round cell tumor: a case report and review of literature 
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) is an uncommon and highly aggressive malignancy with undetermined histogenesis and poor prognosis. To date, no case of testicular DSRCT has been reported in the literature.
A 42-year-old Chinese man presented with painless swelling of his left testis and a painless palpable nodule in his left inguinal region. Computed tomography showed a solid mass in the left testis and multiple metastases in the body. Laboratory tests gave no abnormal results. Left radical orchiectomy was performed, and histopathological and molecular pathological examination showed typical features of DSRCT. Six cycles of chemotherapy were administrated after the operation, leading to partial remission. Postoperative 9-month follow-up indicated no progression.
PMCID: PMC4107620  PMID: 25037705
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor; Testis; Immunohistochemistry; Chemotherapy
4.  Adenosine Transporter ENT4 Is a Direct Target of EWS/WT1 Translocation Product and Is Highly Expressed in Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor 
PLoS ONE  2008;3(6):e2353.
Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor (DSRCT) is a highly aggressive malignancy that affects mainly adolescents and young adults. A defining characteristic of DSRCT is a specific chromosomal translocation, t(11;22)(p13;q12), that fuses EWS with WT1, leading to a production of two isoforms of chimeric transcription factor, EWS/WT1(−KTS) and EWS/WT1(+KTS). The chimeric proteins are thought to play critical roles in various stages of oncogenesis through aberrant transcription of different genes, but only a few of these genes have been identified.
Methodology/Principal Findings
We report the identification of a new target of EWS/WT1, ENT4 (equilibrative nucleoside transporter 4) which encodes a pH-dependent adenosine transporter. ENT4 is transcriptionally activated by both isoforms of EWS/WT1 as evidenced by promoter-reporter and chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) analyses. Furthermore, ENT4 is highly and specifically expressed in primary tumors of DSRCT as well as in a DSRCT cell line, JN-DSRCT-1. Treatment of JN-DSRCT-1 cells with adenosine analogs, such as 2-chloro-2′-deoxyadenosine (2-CdA), resulted in an increased cytotoxic response in dose- and pH-dependent manner.
Our detailed analyses of a novel target of EWS/WT1 in DSRCT reveal an insight into the oncogenic mechanism of EWS-fusion chromosomal translocation gene products and provide a new marker for DSRCT. Furthermore, identification of ENT4 as a highly expressed transcript in DSRCT may represent an attractive pathway for targeting chemotherapeutic drugs into DSRCT.
PMCID: PMC2394657  PMID: 18523561
5.  Desmoplastic small round cell tumour: the radiological, pathological and clinical features 
Insights into Imaging  2013;4(1):111-118.
Desmoplastic small round cell tumours (DSRCTs) are rare aggressive tumours of young adults that present late and have poor prognosis. This review discusses distinctive radiological features, histopathology and clinical course of this soft-tissue sarcoma.
From 1991 to 2012, the radiology of 20 patients with pathologically proven DSRCT was independently reviewed by two experienced radiologists. The clinical presentation, treatment and outcome were recorded.
Patients: 16 men, four women; mean age 28.3 years. Computed tomography (CT) demonstrated peritoneal/omental masses without an organ of origin (94 %), with the majority of cases demonstrating large (>5 cm) dominant soft-tissue deposit (80 %) with multiple smaller foci. CT and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) typically demonstrated heterogeneous soft-tissue enhancement with cystic degeneration. A minority (20 %) demonstrated calcification. Lymph node enlargement occurred in 50 % of cases. Distant metastatic disease occurred in 25 %. Painful abdominal masses were clinically predominant. Treatment strategies include combination chemotherapy with debulking surgery and/or radiotherapy. Median survival from diagnosis was 22.8 months.
Features of multifocal peritoneal/omental masses, usually in combination with a dominant soft tissue deposit, are distinctive in this rare sarcoma. CT/MRI defines the extent of disease and characterises supporting imaging findings. Prolific desmoplastic reaction histologically separates DSRCT from similar subtypes. Combination treatment strategies can infer a survival benefit but prognosis remains poor.
Teaching Points
• DSRCTs are rare tumours of young adults (mean age 28.3 years) with a male predominance (4:1).
• Painful abdominal masses clinically predominate. Non-specific features of malignancy can be present.
• Multifocal peritoneal masses with a dominant soft tissue lesion is a distinctive imaging finding.
• A large desmoplastic reaction differentiates DSRCTs from histologically similar round cell subtypes.
• Despite debulking surgery with adjuvant chemotherapy, median survival from diagnosis is 22.3 months.
PMCID: PMC3579986  PMID: 23307783
Desmoplastic small round cell tumour; DSRCT; Radiology; Pathology; Clinical features; Imaging; Treatment
6.  Clinical and computed tomography features of adult abdominopelvic desmoplastic small round cell tumor 
To investigate the clinical and computed tomography (CT) features of desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT), we retrospectively analyzed the clinical presentations, treatment and outcome, as well as CT manifestations of four cases of DSRCT confirmed by surgery and pathology. The CT manifestations of DSRCT were as follows: (1) multiple soft-tissue masses or diffuse peritoneal thickening in the abdomen and pelvis, with the dominant mass usually located in the pelvic cavity; (2) masses without an apparent organ-based primary site; (3) mild to moderate homogeneous or heterogeneous enhancement in solid area on enhanced CT; and (4) secondary manifestations, such as ascites, hepatic metastases, lymphadenopathy, hydronephrosis and hydroureter. The prognosis and overall survival rates were generally poor. Commonly used treatment strategies including aggressive tumor resection, polychemotherapy, and radiotherapy, showed various therapeutic effects. CT of DSRCT shows characteristic features that are helpful in diagnosis. Early discovery and complete resection, coupled with postoperative adjuvant chemotherapy, are important for prognosis of DSRCT. Whole abdominopelvic rather than locoregional radiotherapy is more effective for unresectable DSRCT.
PMCID: PMC4009557  PMID: 24803835
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor; Peritoneum; Pathology; Computed tomography; Clinical features
7.  Desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) xenografts and tissue culture lines: Establishment and initial characterization 
Oncology Letters  2013;5(5):1453-1456.
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) is an extremely rare and aggressive neoplasm, which mainly affects young males and generally presents as a widely disseminated tumor within the peritoneal cavity. Due to the rarity of the tumor, its younger and overall healthier patient population (compared with other tumor types) and the fact that it lacks definitive histological and immunohistological features, the diagnosis of DSRCT may be frequently delayed or the tumor may be entirely misdiagnosed as a different type of abdominal sarcoma. The present study aimed to rectify the lack of models that exist for this rare neoplasm, through the development of several DSRCT tissue cultures and xenograft lines. Samples were received from surgeries and biopsies from patients worldwide and were immediately processed for xenograft development in nude mice. Tumor tissues were minced and fragments were injected into the dorsal flanks of nude mice. Of the 14 samples received, nine were established into xenograft lines and five into tissue culture lines. Xenografts displayed the microscopic histology of their parent tumors and demonstrated two different growth rates among the established xenograft lines. Overall, the establishment of these xenograft and tissue culture lines provides researchers with tools to evaluate DSRCT responses to chemotherapy and to investigate DSRCT-specific signaling pathways or mechanisms.
PMCID: PMC3678573  PMID: 23759995
desmoplastic small round cell tumor; sarcoma; xenograft; nude mice; tissue culture techniques
8.  Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor: Current Management and Recent Findings 
Sarcoma  2012;2012:714986.
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) is a rare and highly aggressive mesenchymal tumor that develops in the abdominal cavity of young men adults. Patients typically present with symptoms of abdominal sarcomatosis. Diagnosis is based on histological analysis of biopsies which typically show small round blue cells in nests separated by an abundant desmoplastic stroma. DSRCT is associated with a unique chromosomal translocation t(11:22) (p 13; q 12) that involves the EWSR1 and WT1 genes. The prognosis is particularly poor; median survival ranges from 17 to 25 months, largely due to the presentation of the majority of patients with metastatic disease. Management of DSRCT remains challenging and current schemes lack a significant cure rate despite the use of aggressive treatments such as polychemotherapy, debulking surgery and whole abdominal radiation. Several methods are being evaluated to improve survival: addition of chemotherapy and targeted therapies to standard neoadjuvant protocol, completion of surgical resection with HIPEC, postoperative IMRT, treatment of hepatic metastases with [90Y]Yttrium microsphere liver embolization.
PMCID: PMC3329898  PMID: 22550424
9.  Desmoplastic small round cell tumor with atypical immunohistochemical profile and rhabdoid-like differentiation 
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) is a rare, aggressive malignant neoplasm of unknown origin, and is comprised of small round cells with a characteristic desmoplastic stroma. DSRCT typically expresses epithelial, mesenchymal and neural markers simultaneously. We describe a case of DSRCT with an atypical immunohistochemical profile and rhabdoid-like tumor cells on electron microscopy. In the present case, the neoplastic cells were positive only for vimentin, desmin (cytoplasmic membranous pattern) and CD56, and negative for smooth muscle actin, synaptophysin, CD117, CD45, myogenin, CAM5.2, pancytokeratin, WT1, EMA, CD99, neurofilament, CD34 and p53. Ki67 showed a low proliferative activity. Electron microscopy showed focal rhabdoid differentiation. However, INI-1 (SNF-5/BAF47) demonstrated preservation of nuclear positivity in the neoplastic cells. Cytogenetic studies showed translocation t(11;22)(p13;q12) confirming an EWSR1-WT1 translocation characteristic for DSRCT, and t(1;15)(q11;p11.2) of unknown significance. This case is a diagnostic challenge because of atypical immunohistochemical profile and cytogenetic study is crucial in rendering the correct diagnosis.
PMCID: PMC4133428  PMID: 25133149
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor; Ultrastructure; Cytogenetics; Rhabdoid cells; EWSR1-WT1
10.  The oncogenic properties of EWS/WT1 of desmoplastic small round cell tumors are unmasked by loss of p53 in murine embryonic fibroblasts 
BMC Cancer  2013;13:585.
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) is characterized by the presence of a fusion protein EWS/WT1, arising from the t (11;22) (p13;q12) translocation. Here we examine the oncogenic properties of two splice variants of EWS/WT1, EWS/WT1-KTS and EWS/WT1 + KTS.
We over-expressed both EWS/WT1 variants in murine embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) of wild-type, p53+/- and p53-/- backgrounds and measured effects on cell-proliferation, anchorage-independent growth, clonogenicity after serum withdrawal, and sensitivity to cytotoxic drugs and gamma irradiation in comparison to control cells. We examined gene expression profiles in cells expressing EWS/WT1. Finally we validated our key findings in a small series of DSRCT.
Neither isoform of EWS/WT1 was sufficient to transform wild-type MEFs however the oncogenic potential of both was unmasked by p53 loss. Expression of EWS/WT1 in MEFs lacking at least one allele of p53 enhanced cell-proliferation, clonogenic survival and anchorage-independent growth. EWS/WT1 expression in wild-type MEFs conferred resistance to cell-cycle arrest after irradiation and daunorubicin induced apoptosis. We show DSRCT commonly have nuclear localization of p53, and copy-number amplification of MDM2/MDMX. Expression of either isoform of EWS/WT1 induced characteristic mRNA expression profiles. Gene-set enrichment analysis demonstrated enrichment of WNT pathway signatures in MEFs expressing EWS/WT1 + KTS. Wnt-activation was validated in cell lines with over-expression of EWS/WT1 and in DSRCT.
In conclusion, we show both isoforms of EWS/WT1 have oncogenic potential in MEFs with loss of p53. In addition we provide the first link between EWS/WT1 and Wnt-pathway signaling. These data provide novel insights into the function of the EWS/WT1 fusion protein which characterize DSRCT.
PMCID: PMC4029184  PMID: 24321497
11.  Combined resection and multi-agent adjuvant chemotherapy for desmoplastic small round cell tumor arising in the abdominal cavity: Report of a case 
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) is a rare, highly aggressive malignancy with distinctive histological features: a nesting pattern of cellular growth within dense desmoplastic stroma, occurring in young population with male predominance. The mean survival period is only about 1.5-2.5 years. The tumor has co-expressed epithelial, muscle, and neural markers in immunohistochemical studies. This work reports a 27-year-old man presenting with hematemesis and chronic constipation. Serial studies including endoscopy, upper gastrointestinal series, abdominal computed tomography and barium enema study showed disseminated involvement of visceral organs. The patient underwent aggressive surgery and received postoperative adjuvant chemotherapy consisting of 5-fluorouracil, cyclophosphamide, etoposide, doxorubicin, and cisplatin. He survived without any disease for 20 mo after the surgery. No standard treatment protocol has been established. Aggressive surgery combined with postoperative multi-agent adjuvant chemotherapy is justified not only to relieve symptoms but also to try to improve the outcome in this advanced DSRCT young patient.
PMCID: PMC4066136  PMID: 16521199
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor; Surgery; Chemotherapy
12.  Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor of the Abdomen and Pelvis: Clinicopathological Characters of 12 Cases 
The Scientific World Journal  2014;2014:549612.
Purpose. To study the clinical, radiological, and pathological characteristics of abdominal desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) and investigate the optimal therapy modalities. Patients and Methods. A retrospective cohort study was performed on 12 abdominal DSRCT patients; all pathological, radiological, and prognostic data were analyzed. There were 3 patients (25%) with metastatic disease at presentation. In all 12 cases, 6 cases underwent operation and adjuvant chemotherapy (group 1, 6/12, 50%). The other 6 cases were diagnosed by fine needle aspiration or exploratory laparotomy biopsy (group 2, 6/12, 50%); all cases received four to six courses of multiple agents chemotherapy, respectively. Results. All cases were finally diagnosed as DSRCT pathologically. Among group 1, all cases underwent en bloc resection (2/6, 33%) or tumor debulking (4/6, 67%) and, following four courses of multiple agents chemotherapy, Kaplan-Meier analysis revealed that 3-year survival was 50% in group 1 versus 16.7% in group 2 (P < 0.05). Gross tumor resection was highly significant in prolonging overall survival; patients with localized solitary lesion have a better prognosis, most likely due to increased feasibility of resection. Conclusions. DSRCT is a rare malignant tumor with poor prognosis. Surgical excision with combination chemotherapy as an adjunct is mandatory for nonmetastatic cases because these modalities used in isolation may have less impact.
PMCID: PMC4060500  PMID: 24987737
13.  Paraneoplastic secondary hypertension due to a renin-secreting desmoplastic small round cell tumor: A case report 
Oncology Letters  2014;8(5):1986-1992.
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) is a rare and aggressive malignancy with a poor outcome that occurs in adolescents and young adults; <200 cases of DSRCT have been reported. Renin-producing tumors are also rare and cases of extrarenal renin-producing tumors are even rarer. The present study describes the case of a 20-year-old male that was diagnosed with DSRCT and presented with severe hypertension and hypokalemia, as well as metabolic alkalosis. The plasma renin activity (PRA) level was identified to be markedly elevated (normal range in standing and supine positions, 1.3–4.0 ng/ml/h and 0.15–2.33 ng/ml/h, respectively) and the plasma aldosterone level was also increased (normal range in standing and supine positions, 4.0–31.0 ng/dl and 1.0–1.6 ng/dl, respectively). The symptoms of the patient were consistent with the renin-secreting tumor triad, which comprises hypertension, hypokalemia and elevated PRA. Paraneoplastic syndromes must always be considered in cancer patients exhibiting unusual clinical findings, despite their rarity. The current patient was diagnosed with paraneoplastic secondary hypertension due to the presence of disseminated renin-secreting DSRCT. The patient was treated with the VAC/IE regimen (vincristine, adriamycin, cyclophosphamide, ifosfamide and etoposide) for six cycles. Following this treatment, the serum renin and aldosterone levels fell to within the normal range and the patient’s blood pressure was normalized without antihypertensive medication. Although an immunohistochemical evaluation of renin was not conducted as the sample size was inadequate, the present study demonstrated that the tumor had produced renin. The biosynthesis of renin was identified by the presence of mRNA that coded for the renin precursor, which was observed in the ascites of the patient. The current study describes, to the best of our knowledge, the first reported case of paraneoplastic secondary hypertension in a patient presenting with a renin-producing DSRCT.
PMCID: PMC4186556  PMID: 25289084
desmoplastic small round cell tumor; aldosterone; plasma renin activity; paraneoplastic secondary hypertension; renin-producing tumor
14.  Morphoproteomic Profiling of the Mammalian Target of Rapamycin (mTOR) Signaling Pathway in Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor (EWS/WT1), Ewing’s Sarcoma (EWS/FLI1) and Wilms’ Tumor(WT1) 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(7):e68985.
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) is a rare sarcoma in adolescents and young adults. The hallmark of this disease is a EWS-WT1 translocation resulting from apposition of the Ewing’s sarcoma (EWS) gene with the Wilms’ tumor (WT1) gene. We performed morphoproteomic profiling of DSRCT (EWS-WT1), Ewing’s sarcoma (EWS-FLI1) and Wilms’ tumor (WT1) to better understand the signaling pathways for selecting future targeted therapies.
This pilot study assessed patients with DSRCT, Wilms’ tumor and Ewing’s sarcoma. Morphoproteomics and immunohistochemical probes were applied to detect: p-mTOR (Ser2448); p-Akt (Ser473); p-ERK1/2 (Thr202/Tyr204); p-STAT3 (Tyr 705); and cell cycle-related analytes along with their negative controls.
Principal Findings
In DSRCT the PI3K/Akt/mTOR pathway is constitutively activated by p-Akt (Ser 473) expression in the nuclear compartment of the tumor cells and p-mTOR phosphorylated on Ser 2448, suggesting mTORC2 (rictor+mTOR) as the dominant form. Ewing’s sarcoma had upregulated p-Akt and p-mTOR, predominantly mTORC2. In Wilm’s tumor, the mTOR pathway is also activated with most tumor cells moderately expressing p-mTOR (Ser 2448) in plasmalemmal and cytoplasmic compartments. This coincides with the constitutive activation of one of the downstream effectors of the mTORC1 signaling pathway, namely p-p70S6K (Thr 389). There was constitutive activation of the Ras/Raf/ERK pathway p-ERK 1/2 (Thr202/Tyr204) expression in the Wilms tumor and metastatic Ewing’s sarcoma, but not in the DSRCT.
Morphoproteomic tumor analyses revealed constitutive activation of the mTOR pathway as evidenced by: (a) expression of phosphorylated (p)-mTOR, p-p70S6K; (b) mTORC 2 in EWS and DSRCT; (c) ERK signaling was seen in the advanced setting indicating these as resistance pathways to IGF1R related therapies. This is the first morphoproteomic study of such pathways in these rare malignancies and may have potential therapeutic implications. Further study using morphoproteomic assessments of these tumors are warranted.
PMCID: PMC3726753  PMID: 23922674
15.  Primary desmoplastic small round cell tumor of the testis: A case report and review of the literature 
Oncology Letters  2013;6(2):565-567.
Desmoplastic small round cell tumors (DSRCTs) are extremely rare and mainly affect adolescents and young adults. The tumors are usually involved with the abdominal area and/or the pelvic peritoneum. Only a small number of cases have been reported concerning DSRCTs of the testicular region. The present study reports a case of DSRCT of the testis with radical orchectomy and systemic chemotherapy, leaving the patient disease-free for 14 months. However, the patient died of multiple metastasis 12 months later. Furthermore there is a review of the English literature to analyze the incidence, site of origin, imaging and pathological characteristics of DSRCT.
PMCID: PMC3789079  PMID: 24137371
desmoplastic small round cell tumor; testis
16.  Symptomatic Hypoglycemia Related to Inappropriately High IGF-II Serum Levels in a Patient with Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor 
Case Reports in Medicine  2010;2010:684045.
A 45-year old man was diagnosed with desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) with involvement of the peritoneum and pelvis. Disease progression was observed despite systemic chemotherapy. Six months after diagnosis, he developed severe hypoglycemia presented with seizures. He received intravenous glucose infusion and hydrocortisone with poor glycemic control, but with seizures resolution. The investigation excluded insulinoma, adrenal, liver and GH deficiencies. Laboratory showed slight rise of IGF-II and significant increase of the ratio IGF-II : IGF-I, which is pathognomonic of non-islet cell tumor hypoglycemia (NICTH). He received the diagnoses of NICTH related to IGF-II inappropriate production by DSRCT. Despite the attempt to control tumor mass and hypoglycemia, the patient died 9 months after diagnosis. NICTH related to inappropriate IGF-II secretion should be investigated in all cancer patients with refractory hypoglycemia whom insulinoma and other metabolic abnormalities were excluded from.
PMCID: PMC2892690  PMID: 20592985
17.  Desmoplastic small round cell tumor: impact of 18F-FDG PET induced treatment strategy in a patient with long-term outcome 
Rare Tumors  2009;1(1):e19.
The desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) is an uncommon and highly aggressive cancer. The role of 18F-FDG PET in management of DSRCT is little reported. We report a case of metastasized abdominal DSRCT detected in a 43-year old patient whose diagnostic and therapeutic approaches were influenced by 18F-FDG PET-CT. The patient is still alive ten years after diagnosis. 18F-FDG PET-CT seems to be a useful method for assessing therapeutic efficiency and detecting early recurrences even in rare malignancies such as DSRCT.
PMCID: PMC2994440  PMID: 21139890
18.  An Unusual Presentation of Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumour of the Abdomen: Morphological, Immunohistochemical, Ultrastructural, and Molecular Studies 
Desmoplastic small round cell tumour (DSRCT) is an aggressive and a rare neoplasm. We report on a 34-year-old male who had abdominal discomfort with a large intraperitoneal mass. Histological examination of the tumour biopsy revealed sheets of small round cells. The cells were positive with vimentin and desmin (with occasional dot positivity) and negative for WT1 and CD 99 with immunohistochemistry. Cytogenetics showed a translocation disrupting the EWSR 1 gene on 22 q 12 consistent with DSRCT. Electron microscopic examination showed sparse cytoplasmic organelles. The patient succumbed 34 months from disease presentation after multiple chemotherapies and thereafter radiotherapy. In summary, our case exemplifies that it is crucial to combine clinical, histological, and molecular aspects in diagnosing DSRCT especially when characteristic dot positivity with desmin is weak along with deficient marking of WT1 and CD99 by immunohistochemistry. Histology was also less clear than published examples of this entity with a poor desmoplastic response. A multidisciplinary approach including early referral to specialised centres is recommended in these cases as tertiary referral centres will be required to substantiate the diagnosis.
PMCID: PMC3350138  PMID: 22606441
19.  Intra-abdominal desmoplastic small round cell tumor: Presentation of four cases and review of the literature 
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) of the abdomen is a recently identified aggressive neoplasm. Very few cases have been reported in the literature. Thus, the treatment guidelines are yet to be defined. The role of chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgery is evolving. We treated four cases of DSRCT involving the abdomen using combination chemotherapy and/or tumor cytoreductive surgery. There were two men and two women. The chemotherapy drugs consisted of cisplatin, adriamycin, etoposide, ifosphamide, vincristine and cyclophsophamide. All patients achieved meaningful partial response to chemotherapy, which maintained for 6–9 months. There were very minimal chemotherapy-related complications. At the time of reporting, the median survival time was 15 months. Thus, DSRCT is an aggressive intra-abdominal tumor with excellent chemoresponsiveness, but relapse is frequent.
PMCID: PMC2941599  PMID: 20931017
Abdomen; chemotherapy; desmoplastic small round cell tumor; management and prognosis; radiotherapy; surgery
20.  Primary desmoplastic small round cell tumor of the duodenum 
The desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) is an extremely rare tumor that mainly affects adolescents and mostly involves the abdominal and pelvic peritoneum. A 14-year-old girl presented with intermittent epigastric pain; abdominal computed tomography and upper gastrointestinal barium X-ray revealed an 8 cm × 10 cm space-occupying mass in the duodenal region. The patient underwent pancreaticoduodenectomy and the final pathologic diagnosis was DSRCT. Although multi-agent systemic chemotherapy was given, the patient died of metastasis 8 months later. Early diagnosis and surgical treatment with adjuvant chemotherapy seems to be the best treatment choice for this disease.
PMCID: PMC4096735  PMID: 24997683
chemotherapy; desmoplastic small round cell tumor; duodenum; surgery
21.  Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor: Report of 2 Cases Treated with Chemotherapy Alone or in Combination with Bevacizumab 
Case Reports in Oncology  2014;7(1):102-108.
Here, we present 2 case reports of patients with desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT), a very rare and aggressive mesenchymal cancer, and we discuss 2therapeutic options for this sarcoma. This report focuses on men aged 22 and 37 years, respectively. The first patient presented with an abdominopelvic mass which was not suitable for surgery. He underwent chemotherapy (adriblastina and cisplatin) with a brief partial remission and survival time of 13 months. The second patient presented with an abdominal mass and underwent partial resection. He received chemotherapy and bevacizumab, resulting in a partial remission and a survival time of 34 months. The extent of surgery and monoclonal antibody use probably had a positive impact on survival. It is necessary to include specific targeted therapies in an attempt to improve survival. Surprisingly, positron emission tomography was not effective in restaging of the second patient, emphasizing the importance of computed tomography or magnetic resonance in DSRCT.
PMCID: PMC3975756  PMID: 24707256
Desmoplastic small round cell tumor; Chemotherapy; Abdominal tumor; Bevacizumab
22.  Clinicopathological investigation of four cases of desmoplastic small round cell tumor 
Oncology Letters  2012;4(3):423-428.
The purpose of this study was to perform clinicopathological and immunohistochemical analysis and to investigate the Ewing sarcoma gene (EWS)-Wilms' tumor suppressor gene (WT1) fusion within desmoplastic small round cell tumors (DSRCTs). Histology slides and clinical data were reviewed for four patients with DSRCT. A variety of immunohistochemical staining was performed. Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) was performed to detect the EWS-WT1 fusion transcripts resulting from the chromosomal translocation t(11;22)(p13;q12). The patients consisted of four males aged from 26 to 52 years old (mean, 33.5). In three of these patients, the tumors were situated in the abdominal cavity and the tumor from the other patient was located in the pelvic cavity. The tumors were 8–15 cm in diameter (mean tumor diameter, 13), solid and gray-white, with an appearance of nodosity or sublobes, and hemorrhage or necrosis was observed. Microscopically, the tumors consisted of small round cell nests of unequal size. Hyperplastic and thick fibrous connective tissue surrounding the neoplastic cell nests was present in all cases. The tumor nuclei were hyperchromatic and contained inconspicuous nucleoli with a high level of karyokinesis. Immunohistochemical staining revealed diffuse and strong staining for CK, vimentin, desmin and CAM5.2 in all cases. Certain cases also expressed WT-1, EMA, NSE, CD56, CD99 and CK5/6. Staining was negative for myogenin, MyoD1, calretinin, CD117, CD34, HMB45 and CEA. EWS-WT1 fusion transcripts were detected in 3 out of 4 cases, but not in any other tumor types studied as controls using paraffin-embedded tissue by FISH. DSRCT is a highly maligant tumor occuring predominantly in the abdominal or pelvic cavity of young males with multiphenotypic differentiation. Basic morphological features, clinical manifestations and the detection of the EWS-WT1 fusion transcript within the tumor aid the recognition and diagnosis of the tumor.
PMCID: PMC3673645  PMID: 23741244
desmoplastic small round cell tumor; clinicopathological features; immunophenotype; gene fusion
23.  Novel Secondary Somatic Mutations in Ewing's Sarcoma and Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumors 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(8):e93676.
Ewing's sarcoma (ES) and desmoplastic small round cell tumors (DSRCT) are small round blue cell tumors driven by an N-terminal containing EWS translocation. Very few somatic mutations have been reported in ES, and none have been identified in DSRCT. The aim of this study is to explore potential actionable mutations in ES and DSRCT.
Twenty eight patients with ES or DSRCT had tumor tissue available that could be analyzed by one of the following methods: 1) Next-generation exome sequencing platform; 2) Multiplex PCR/Mass Spectroscopy; 3) Polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based single- gene mutation screening; 4) Sanger sequencing; 5) Morphoproteomics.
Principal Findings
Novel somatic mutations were identified in four out of 18 patients with advanced ES and two of 10 patients with advanced DSRCT (six out of 28 (21.4%));KRAS (n = 1), PTPRD (n = 1), GRB10 (n = 2), MET (n = 2) and PIK3CA (n = 1). One patient with both PTPRD and GRB10 mutations and one with a GRB10 mutation achieved a complete remission (CR) on an Insulin like growth factor 1 receptor (IGF1R) inhibitor based treatment. One patient, who achieved a partial remission (PR) with IGF1R inhibitor treatment, but later developed resistance, demonstrated a KRAS mutation in the post-treatment resistant tumor, but not in the pre-treatment tumor suggesting that the RAF/RAS/MEK pathway was activated with progression.
We have reported several different mutations in advanced ES and DSRCT that have direct implications for molecularly-directed targeted therapy. Our technology agnostic approach provides an initial mutational roadmap used in the path towards individualized combination therapy.
PMCID: PMC4131855  PMID: 25119929
24.  Outpatient and Home Chemotherapy with Novel Local Control Strategies in Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor 
Sarcoma  2008;2008:261589.
Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor (DSRCT) has a very poor prognosis. This report illustrates novel chemotherapy and local control interventions in a 5-year old patient. The patient was treated in the outpatient setting, achieved remission, with excellent quality of life. The patient presented with massive ascites and >1000 abdominal tumors. Neoadjuvant chemotherapy included vincristine (1.5 mg/m2), ifosfamide (3 g/m2/day × 3), dexrazoxane/doxorubicin (750/75 mg/m2), and etoposide (150 mg/m2). Continuous hyperthermic peritoneal perfusion (CHPP) with cisplatin (100 mg/m2) was given after extensive cytoreductive surgery. This was followed by irinotecan (10 mg/m2/day × 5 × 2 weeks) + temozolomide monthly × 2, then abdominal radiation 30 Gy with simultaneous temozolomide (100 mg/m2/day × 5). A total of 12 cycles of irinotecan and temozolamide were given. Except for initial chemotherapy, subsequent courses were in the outpatient setting. Focal retroperitoneal relapse at 18 months was treated with IMRT with bevacizumab (5 mg/kg) and 2 perihepatic metastases with radio frequency ablation/cryoablation followed by chronic outpatient maintenance chemotherapy (valproic acid, cyclophosphamide, and rapamycin). Almost 2 years from diagnosis, the patient maintained an excellent quality of life. This is a novel approach to the treatment of children with massive abdomino-pelvic DSRCT.
PMCID: PMC2430011  PMID: 18566684
25.  Retroperitoneal desmoplastic small round cell tumor: Pediatric patient treated with multimodal therapy 
A desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT) is a rare, aggressive mesenchymal neoplasm. Although a DSRCT can develop at various sites, the intra-abdominal site is the most common location. These tumors are found most commonly among young adolescents and the prognosis is extremely poor. Multimodal treatment with surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy is very important for these rare cases, and this treatment can improve patient survival. In this report, we describe the case of an 8-year-old boy diagnosed with DSRCT located in the retroperitoneal space. The patient has undergone surgical resection and adjuvant chemoradiation therapy, and is currently alive without disease recurrence.
PMCID: PMC2738824  PMID: 19725162
Retroperitoneum; Desmoplastic small round cell tumor; Multimodal therapy

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