High-risk human papillomavirus-mediated adenocarcinoma of palatine tonsil

Borislav A. Alexiev*, Amir Behdad, Xinyan Lu, Esther Cheng, Sandeep Samant

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


We describe the case of a human papillomavirus-mediated adenocarcinoma of palatine tonsil in a 51-year-old male. Histologically, the tumor exhibited a predominantly cribriform and tubular (glandular) growth of cuboidal and columnar cells with moderate amount of pale eosinophilic cytoplasm and oval or spindled nuclei with finely dispersed or coarse chromatin and small to medium-sized nucleoli. Foci of nuclear anaplasia and multinucleation, numerous mitotic figures, and necrosis (individual-cell and confluent) were seen. No squamous differentiation was identified. The tumor cells showed strong expression of CK7, p16 and HPV E6/E7 mRNA transcripts, and were negative for p40, CK5/6, AR, synaptophysin and chromogranin. Next generation sequencing showed 3 variants of unknown significance: FGF3 p.(R44fs); NF1 p.(S749 L) and POLE p. (S1506 L) with variant allele frequencies of 37 %; 20 %, and 17 % respectively. Chromosomal microarray analysis using single nucleotide polymorphism microarray (OncoScan) assay showed whole chromosomal gains of chromosomes 8 and 19, whole chromosomal losses of chromosomes 2 and 16, as well as segmental gains of chromosomes 3q25.31q29 (encompassing the PIK3CA gene), 17q21.31q25.3, 20p13q13.33, Xq28, and segmental losses of chromosomes 1q32.2, 6p25.1p21.1, 11q23.1q24.1, 12p11.22, 12p11.22, 14q24.1q32.33, 17p13.3q21.31 (encompassing the TP53 and NF1 genes). The results highlight the need to consider HPV testing in non-squamous cell carcinomas of the oropharynx.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number152924
JournalPathology Research and Practice
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2020


  • Adenocarcinoma
  • Human papillomavirus
  • Tonsil

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'High-risk human papillomavirus-mediated adenocarcinoma of palatine tonsil'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this