Characteristics of hydatidiform moles: Analysis of a prospective series with p57 immunohistochemistry and molecular genotyping

Natalie Banet, Cheryl Descipio, Kathleen M. Murphy, Katie Beierl, Emily Adams, Russell Vang, Brigitte M. Ronnett

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68 Scopus citations


Immunohistochemical analysis of cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1C (CDKN1C, p57, Kip2) expression and molecular genotyping accurately classify hydatidiform moles into complete and partial types and distinguish these from non-molar specimens. Characteristics of a prospective series of all potentially molar specimens encountered in a large gynecologic pathology practice are summarized. Initially, all specimens were subjected to both analyses; this was later modified to triage cases for genotyping based on p57 results: p57-negative cases diagnosed as complete hydatidiform moles without genotyping; all p57-positive cases genotyped. Of the 678 cases, 645 were definitively classified as complete hydatidiform mole (201), partial hydatidiform mole (158), non-molar (272), and androgenetic/biparental mosaic (14); 33 were unsatisfactory, complex, or problematic. Of the 201 complete hydatidiform moles, 104 were p57-negative androgenetic and an additional 95 were p57-negative (no genotyping), 1 was p57-positive (retained maternal chromosome 11) androgenetic, and 1 was p57-non-reactive androgenetic; 90 (85%) of the 106 genotyped complete hydatidiform moles were monospermic and 16 were dispermic. Of the 158 partial hydatidiform moles, 155 were diandric triploid, with 154 p57-positive, 1 p57-negative (loss of maternal chromosome 11), and 1 p57-non-reactive; 3 were triandric tetraploid, with 2 p57-positive and 1 p57-negative (loss of maternal chromosome 11). Of 155 diandric triploid partial hydatidiform moles, 153 (99%) were dispermic and 2 were monospermic. Of the 272 non-molar specimens, 259 were p57-positive biparental diploid, 5 were p57-positive digynic triploid, 2 were p57-negative biparental diploid (no morphological features of biparental hydatidiform mole), and 6 were p57-non-reactive biparental diploid. Of the 14 androgenetic/biparental mosaics with discordant p57 expression, 6 were uniformly mosaic and 8 had a p57-negative androgenetic molar component. p57 expression is highly correlated with genotyping, serves as a reliable marker for diagnosis of complete hydatidiform moles, and identifies androgenetic cell lines in mosaic conceptions. Cases with aberrant and discordant p57 expression can be correctly classified by genotyping.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)238-254
Number of pages17
JournalModern Pathology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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