, Volume 22, Issue 1, pp 70–78 | Cite as

Evaluation of expression of somatostatin receptor 1, 2, 3, 5 and dopamine D2 receptor in spindle cell oncocytomas of posterior pituitary

  • Jiri SoukupEmail author
  • Petra Kasparova
  • Ales Kohout
  • Boris Rychly
  • Veronika Skarkova
  • Martin Syrucek
  • Filip Gabalec



Spindle cell oncocytomas (SCOs) are very rare tumors of the posterior pituitary with potential for locally aggressive behaviour. Their treatment includes surgery and possibly radiotherapy, however other options are lacking. Somatostatin receptors (SSTs) are a possible therapeutic target for somatostatin analogues and their expression has been demonstrated recently in closely related pituicytomas, but there are no data about their presence in SCOs.


We collected five cases of SCO from four patients including one recurrent case. Immunohistochemical detection of TTF1, GFAP, CD68, SST1, SST2, SST3, SST5 and D2 dopamine receptor (D2DR) was performed. Intensity, percentage of positive cells and pattern of expression was evaluated in semiquantitative fashion. Protein expression of SST1−5 and D2DR was further evaluated by western blot.


Mean patient age was 61.8 years (range 47–71 years) with male to female ratio 1:1. In one patient, samples from the original tumor and its recurrence 16 years later were assessed. TTF1 was positive in all five cases, no expression of GFAP and CD68 was seen. Immunohistochemical expression of SST1 was noted in 1/5 cases, SST2 in 2/5 cases, including recurrent case but not the original case. SST3 was expressed in 3/5 tumors and D2 dopamine receptor in 4/5 cases. Western blot was successfully performed in four samples. SST2, SST3 and D2DR expression was identified in all the samples, including two cases originally negative for SST2 and one case negative for SST3 by immunohistochemistry. The number of positive cells and level of expression varied among different areas of the same tumors. No expression of SST5 was observed. In the patient with the recurrent tumor, intensity of SST2, SST3 and D2DR expression varied between original tumor and its recurrence.


We demonstrated presence of different SST subtypes and D2DR in spindle cell oncocytomas. The most commonly expressed subtype was SST2 and SST3, while no expression of SST5 was observed. Expression showed spatial heterogeneity and temporal changes as seen in the recurrent case. The biological meaning of SSTs expression in SCOs is unclear as well as whether it may be exploited in treatment of selected cases.


Spindle cell oncocytoma Posterior pituitary Somatostatin receptors Predictive markers 



This study was supported by project ASPIRE WII229983 from Pfizer. The funding sources had no impact on the study design, collection, analysis, and interpretation of data, on the writing of the article, or on the decision to submit the article for publication. The authors declare no conflicts of interest. The authors would like to thank prof Dr Ales Ryska and prof Dr Jan Cap for their valuable comments and suggestions to improve the quality of the paper.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Fingerland Department of Pathology, University Hospital and Faculty of Medicine Hradec KraloveCharles UniversityHradec KraloveCzech Republic
  2. 2.Cytopathos s.r.oBratislavaSlovakia
  3. 3.Department of Medical Biology and Genetics, Faculty of Medicine Hradec KraloveCharles UniversityHradec KraloveCzech Republic
  4. 4.Pathology DepartmentNa Homolce HospitalPragueCzech Republic
  5. 5.4th Department of Internal Medicine, University Hospital and Faculty of Medicine Hradec KraloveCharles UniversityHradec KraloveCzech Republic

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