BACKGROUND: Deletions of 17p13 recurrently occur in renal cell carcinoma (RCC) but their prognostic role seems to be uncertain.
METHODS: To determine prevalence, relationship with tumor phenotype, and patient prognosis, a tissue microarray containing samples from 1809 RCCs was evaluated using dual labeling fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) with 17p13 and chromosome 17 centromere probes.
RESULTS: A 17p13 deletion was found in 72 of 1429 interpretable tumors. The frequency of 17p13 deletions varied greatly between RCC subtypes and was highest in chromophobe RCC (24/72; 33.3%). 17p13 deletions were also found in 35 (3.7%) of 946 clear cell RCC, 9 (4.3%) of 208 papillary RCC, 1 of 121 oncocytomas (0.8%), as well as in several rare cases of comprising 1 of 7 Xp11.2 translocation cancers, 1 of 3 collecting duct carcinomas, and 1 of 20 not otherwise specified (NOS) carcinomas. In clear cell carcinomas, 17p13 deletions revealed a strong and consistent association with higher Fuhrman, ISUP, and Thoenes grade (p < 0.0001 each), and linked to advanced tumor stage (p = 0.0168), large tumor diameter (p = 0.0004), distant metastases (p = 0.0077), cancer-specific survival (p = 0.0391), and recurrence-free survival (p = 0.0072). In multivariate analysis, 17p13 deletions showed in clear cell RCC a dependent prognostic role for established clinical-pathological parameters.
CONCLUSION: 17p13 deletions have a dual role in RCC. They are associated with disease progression in clear cell RCC and possibly other subtypes and they are linked to the development of chromophobe RCC-a subtype with a particularly favorable prognosis.