Routine morphologic cytology is the basis for any kind of (integrated) molecular FNA diagnostics. The rule out (gene expression classifier) approach requires confirmation by independent studies, whereas the rule in approach (detection of BRAF, NRAS, HRAS, and KRAS and PAX8/PPARG- and RET/PTC rearrangements) has been investigated by several groups with overall reproducible results. Moreover, molecular screening for point mutations and rearrangements is feasible in routine air-dried FNA smears, offering several advantages over obtaining additional fresh FNA material. The current panel of somatic mutations (rule in approach) for indeterminate FNAs clarifies only a subgroup of indeterminate FNAs. Therefore, further markers are urgently needed that can reliably identify the malignant, but mutation negative and especially the many benign nodules, among the indeterminate FNAs. miRNA markers and the targeted next generation sequencing (NGS) technology do have the potential to identify those nodules that are mutation negative by current approaches.
Best Practice and Research: Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, 2014, Vol 28, Issue 4, p. 545-557
cytology; fine needle aspiration; molecular diagnostics; thyroid cancer