Ki-67 index and percentage of sarcomatoid differentiation were two independent prognostic predictors in sarcomatoid renal cell carcinoma.

To identify whether and which of pathological features of sarcomatoid differentiation (SD) in renal cell carcinoma (RCC) can be used as independent predictors associated with overall survival (OS).

After institutional review board approval, patients with a diagnosis of sarcomatoid RCC (sRCC), spindled RCC, or RCC with the presence of spindle cells between 2003 and 2017 were further selected and re-examined. The primary pathological features including histological subtypes, tumor necrosis, Ki-67 index of SD, and the percent of SD (%SD) were included into analysis. Histological subtypes were categorized into clear-cell RCC and nonclear-cell RCC. Ki-67 index of SD was confirmed by immunohistochemical staining. %SD was estimated through reviewing all of the tumor sections microscopically and then giving an approximate %SD within the entire tumor. The clinical relevant prognostic predictor's association with OS was analyzed within Cox proportional hazards regression models. Survival curves were generated using the Kaplan-Meier method, and OS differences were compared using the log-rank test.

A total of 2,089 consecutive patients of RCC were referred to our department, of whom 62 (3.0%) patients were identified with histological element of SD after re-examining the available slides of suspicious cases. Finally, 53 patients were included into survival analysis after excluding 9 patients without adequate information. Thirty-eight (71.7%) patients died at last follow-up. The median OS for all patients was 11.0 months from the date of surgery. In patients with clinical distant metastasis (cM1), the median OS was only 3 compared with 21 months for patients with no clinical distant metastasis (cM0). Tumor stage, status of clinical distant metastasis, Ki-67 index, and %SD were independent predictors of multivariate analysis in overall 53 patients. However, in the cohort of cM0 patients, we found that only %SD and Ki-67 index were two independent predictors of OS in multivariate analysis.

Patients with sRCC are associated with very poor prognosis. Ki-67 index of SD and %SD were identified as the two most important independent predictors particularly for nonmetastatic patients. The limitations of our study were also observed, and further studies are needed.

Cancer management and research. 2018 Nov 05*** epublish ***

Zhixian Wang, Xiaoyong Zeng, Ruibao Chen, Zhiqiang Chen

Department of Urology, Tongji Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, Hubei 430030, China, .