2015 Volume 62 Issue 11 Pages 991-995
Most types of thyroid carcinomas express PAX8 transcription factor; however, whether thyroid squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) also expresses PAX8, currently remains unknown. We herein examined the immunoreactivity of PAX8 in SCC of thyroidal and extrathyroidal origin, and discussed the diagnostic significance of PAX8. We immunohistochemically examined specimens from 11 SCC, 22 papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC), 8 anaplastic thyroid carcinoma (ATC), and 2 mucoepidermoid carcinoma (MEC) cases as well as 5 uterine cervical SCC, 5 esophageal SCC, and 5 pulmonary SCC cases. The rates of PAX8-positive SCC, PTC, ATC, and MEC were 90.9%, 90.9%, 75.0%, and 100%, respectively. Two PAX8-negative PTC cases were cribriform variants. No uterine cervical, esophageal, or pulmonary SCC specimen reacted with PAX8 antibody. Thyroid transcription factor-1 (TTF-1) was positive in 9.1% and 95.5% of SCC and PTC cases, respectively, but negative in all ATC and MEC cases. These results demonstrate that PAX8 staining is useful for distinguishing between primary thyroid SCC and invasion or metastasis from extrathyroidal SCC. We recommend using an immunohistochemical panel of antibodies to PAX8 and TTF-1 to confirm a diagnosis of primary thyroid carcinoma.