Localized malignant mesothelioma of the pleura


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Abstract

We describe a case of malignant pleural mesothelioma appearing as a solitary pleural tumor in a 56-year-old Japanese man with no history of exposure to asbestos. A chest radiograph revealed an isolated extrapulmonary mass in the left hemithorax. The patient underwent tumor resection, but the tumor later recurred on the contralateral pleura. The patient developed cerebral metastases and died 16 months after the initial surgery. The resected tumor was sessile with broad-based pleural attachment. Microscopically, the tumor was composed of interlacing fascicles of plump spindle cells intermixed with few polygonal cells. Most of the tumor cells showed positive immunoreactivity for cytokeratins (AE1 and AE3) and vimentin. Many of the tumor cells were positive for epithelial membrane antigen, and a few were positive for desmin. In contrast, the tumor cells were consistently negative for carcinoembryonic antigen, epithelial antigen BerEP4, calretinin, S-100 protein, neuron-specific enolase, muscle actin antigen HHF35, α-smooth muscle actin antigen and CD34. Ultrastructurally, the tumor cells had diffusely distributed cytoplasmic intermediate filaments, desmosome-like junctions, and a few microvilli. Some tumor cells contained cytoplasmic tonofilaments. Immunohistochemical and ultrastructural findings supported the mesothelial nature of the tumor, and led us to diagnose this tumor as a sarcomatoid localized malignant mesothelioma.

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