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Int J Clin Exp Pathol 2010;3(6):593-599

Original Article
Correlating array comparative genomic hybridization findings with histology and
outcome in spitzoid melanocytic neoplasms

Liaqat Ali, Thomas Helm, Richard Cheney, Jeffrey Conroy, Sheilla Sait, Joan Guitart, Pedram Gerami

Department of Pathology: SUNY Buffalo State University of New York at Buffalo, New York, USA; Department of Pathology: Roswell Park Cancer
Institute, Buffalo, New York, USA; Department of Genomic Resources: Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, New York, USA; Department of
Dermatology and the Northwestern Lurie Cancer Center: Northwestern University, Chicago, Illinois, USA.

Received June 5, 2010, accepted June 25, 2010, available online June 28, 2010

Abstract: Melanocytic neoplasms with spitzoid features including spitz nevi, spitz tumors and spitzoid melanomas are commonly encountered
in the practice of dermatopathology. Although many cases can be accurately diagnosed on the basis of morphology and histology, a significant
number of cases may be difficult to accurately classify.  Several studies have now shown that chromosomal copy number aberrations are
typical of melanoma while present in only a small percent and to a limited degree in spitz nevi.  In this study, we correlated the clinical,
histologic and array CGH findings of 10 spiztoid melanocytic neoplasms.   Our study shows that the clinical and histologic changes correlate
well with the molecular findings by array CGH.  Further that array CGH can be used to help classify and predict behavior of spitzoid melanocytic
neoplasms.  A limited variety of copy number aberrations including gains of 11p and much more rarely 7q may be seen in spitz nevi.  
Additionally in this report we present the first case of a typical spitz nevus with copy number gains involving both 7q and 11p.  Conversely,
melanomas with spitzoid features typically have multiple chromsomal copy number aberrations involving a variety of loci.  A smaller number of
chromosomal aberrations, possibly a single aberrant locus, may be present in spitz tumors, but their presence may predict more aggressive
behavior. (IJCEP1006001).

Key words: Spitzoid melanocytic neoplasms, melanoma, dermatopathology, chromsomal copy number aberrations, array, genomic

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Address all correspondence to:
Pedram Gerami, MD
Department of Dermatology and Dermatopathology
Northwestern University
Chicago, Illinois, USA.
Tel:  312-695-6781