Purpose: Adenocarcinomas of the distal esophagus and gastric cardia are two tumors that have many features in common. They have similar prognoses, treatment modalities, and patterns of dissemination. The etiology is different, with gastroesophageal reflux disease playing a major role for esophageal adenocarcinoma, in contrast to adenocarcinoma of the gastric cardia. In the present study, we investigated several genetic and immunohistochemical features of adenocarcinomas of the distal esophagus and gastric cardia. Experimental Design: Sixty-two resection specimens of either adenocarcinoma of the esophagus or adenocarcinoma of the gastric cardia were carefully selected. The genetic analysis included loss of heterozygosity of several tumor suppressor genes known to be involved in esophagogastric carcinogenesis. Immunohistochemical studies included the analysis of p53, c-Met, c-erbB-2, β-catenin, and cyclooxygenase-2. In addition, a mutation analysis of the Tcf1 gene was done by direct sequencing. Results: Patients with cardiac carcinoma had a significantly worse tumor stage and poorer differentiation on histology. Loss of heterozygosity analysis did not reveal significant differences between esophageal adenocarcinoma and cardiac adenocarcinoma. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed significantly more nuclear accumulation of β-catenin and overexpression of cyclooxygenase-2 in patients with esophageal adenocarcinoma, compared with patients with cardiac carcinoma. No mutation was found in the Tcf1 gene in either tumor type. Conclusions: Although adenocarcinomas of the distal esophagus and gastric cardia have many features in common, we have found some evidence that they might form two different entities.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research