Feminizing sertoli cell tumors in boys with Peutz-Jeghers syndrome

S. Young, S. Gooneratne, F. H. Straus*, W. P. Zeller, S. E. Bulun, I. M. Rosenthal

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

127 Scopus citations


We report the pathology findings in two cases of multicentric Sertoli cell testicular tumors in two young boys with probable Peutz-Jeghers syndrome. Four cases of such tumors occurring in boys with Peutz-Jeghers syndrome were previously reported. Each of the two boys reported in this paper had prominent gynecomastia, rapid growth, and advanced bone age. Serum levels of estradiol were markedly elevated. Anti-mullerian hormone was measured in the serum of one of the boys and was in the normal range for age. Bilateral orchiectomy was performed in each case because the neoplastic growth would most likely result in sterility, and curtailment of height potential was threatened from continued elevation of estradiol levels. Microscopically, greatly enlarged seminiferous tubules packed with ovoid Sertoli-like cells were present. Prominent eosinophilic basement membrane surrounded the tubules and intersected between the cells, forming hyalinized ovoid globules and microcalcifications. Ultrastructure revealed lamination of basement membranes surrounding adjacent cells, ovoid cells with abundant cytoplasm, and limited smooth endoplasmic reticulum. Studies of testicular tumor tissue from both cases revealed increased transcription of the aromatase cytochrome P450 gene using promoter II, the promoter directing aromatase expression in the normal ovary and testis. The levels of transcripts were comparable to corpus luteum, thus resulting in increased estrogen synthesis. Transcripts specific for placental-type aromatase promoters (I.1 and I.2) were not detected in significant levels in these tumors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)50-58
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Surgical Pathology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Surgery
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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