Clinicopathologic significance of EGFR mutation and HPV infection in sinonasal squamous cell carcinoma

Takahiro Hongo, Hidetaka Yamamoto, Rina Jiromaru, Yui Nozaki, Ryuji Yasumatsu, Kazuki Hashimoto, Reiko Yoneda, Azusa Sugii, Kenichi Taguchi, Muneyuki Masuda, Takashi Nakagawa, Yoshinao Oda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


Sinonasal squamous cell carcinoma (SNSCC) is sometimes associated with high-risk human papillomavirus (HR-HPV) infection and inverted sinonasal papilloma or oncocytic sinonasal papilloma. Frequent mutations of EGFR and KRAS are reported in inverted sinonasal papilloma-related sinonasal squamous cell carcinoma (ISP-SCC) and oncocytic sinonasal papilloma-related SNSCC, respectively. Here, we attempted to determine the prevalence and the prognostic significances of these alterations in SNSCC. We retrospectively collected 146 SNSCCs, including 14 ISP-SCCs, and comprehensively analyzed the HR-HPV infection by human papillomavirus (HPV)-RNA in situ hybridization, EGFR gene copy number gain (CNG) by chromogenic in situ hybridization, and gene mutations in EGFR and KRAS by Sanger sequencing. HR-HPV was detected in 11 cases (7.5%), whereas all 14 ISP-SCCs were negative. EGFR mutations were present in 21 (14.7%) of 143 SNSCCs, including 13/14 (92.9%) ISP-SCCs and 8/129 (6.2%) non-ISP-SCCs (P<0.0001). The majority of EGFR mutations were exon 20 insertions, with the remainder composed of deletions and single-nucleotide substitutions in exons 19 and 20. All of 142 SNSCCs harbored no KRAS mutation. EGFR CNG was detected in 41 (28.1%) of 146 SNSCCs; all of them were HPV negative and 3 had EGFR mutations. Collectively, EGFR mutation, EGFR CNG, and HR-HPV were essentially mutually exclusive, and each subgroup had distinct clinicopathologic features. The HPV-negative/EGFR-mutant group, the HPV-negative/EGFR CNG-positive group, and the triple-negative group had significantly worse prognoses than the HPV-positive group (P=0.0265, 0.0264, and 0.0394, respectively). In conclusion, EGFR mutation may play a pathogenetically important role in some populations of SNSCCs, especially ISP-SCCs. The molecular subclassification of SNSCCs may contribute to prognostic prediction and molecular-targeted precision medicine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)108-118
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican Journal of Surgical Pathology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Anatomy
  • Surgery
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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