Hypothesis: Possible role of retinoic acid therapy in patients with biallelic mismatch repair gene defects
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- Gottschling, S., Reinhard, H., Pagenstecher, C. et al. Eur J Pediatr (2008) 167: 225. doi:10.1007/s00431-007-0474-3
A boy showing symptoms of a Turcot-like childhood cancer syndrome together with stigmata of neurofibromatosis type I is reported. His brother suffers from an infantile myofibromatosis, and a sister died of glioblastoma at age 7. Another 7-year-old brother is so far clinically unaffected. The parents are consanguineous. Molecular diagnosis in the index patient revealed a constitutional homozygous mutation of the mismatch repair gene PMS2. The patient was in remission of his glioblastoma (WHO grade IV) after multimodal treatment followed by retinoic acid chemoprevention for 7 years. After discontinuation of retinoic acid medication, he developed a relapse of his brain tumour together with the simultaneous occurrence of three other different HNPCC-related carcinomas. We think that retinoic acid might have provided an effective chemoprevention in this patient with homozygous mismatch repair gene defect. We propose to take a retinoic acid chemoprevention into account in children with proven biallelic PMS2 mismatch repair mutations being at highest risk concerning the development of a malignancy.