J Pathol. 2012 Sep;228(1):113-8. doi: 10.1002/path.4012. Epub 2012 Jul 2.
Frequent activating GNAS mutations in villous adenoma of the colorectum.
To elucidate the role of GNAS mutations in colorectal tumourigenesis, we performed a mutation analysis in a total of 234 colorectal tumours, including adenomas, serrated lesions and adenocarcinomas. Activating GNAS mutations were found in 20 of the 24 villous adenomas (83%) but were absent in all the other tumours, except for one tubulovillous adenoma (3%) and two adenocarcinomas (3%). KRAS and BRAF mutations were always mutually exclusive. KRAS mutations were frequent in villous (67%) and tubulovillous (60%) adenomas but were rare or absent in tubular adenomas (6%) and serrated lesions, including hyperplastic polyps, sessile serrated polyps/sessile serrated lesions and traditional serrated adenomas (0-9%). BRAF mutations were found in four villous adenomas (17%) and in the large majority of serrated lesions (81-92%), but were absent in tubular and tubulovillous adenomas. Seventeen villous adenomas (71%) harboured GNAS mutations concomitantly with KRAS or BRAF mutations. Immunohistochemically, all the villous adenomas retained mismatch repair protein expression, suggesting that they are microsatellite-stable. The current study showed that the presence of activating GNAS mutations, in association with KRAS or BRAF mutations, is a characteristic genetic feature of colorectal villous adenoma.