JOURNAL ARTICLE
REVIEW

Familial pituitary adenomas

M A Tichomirowa, A F Daly, A Beckers
Journal of Internal Medicine 2009, 266 (1): 5-18
19522822
The majority of pituitary adenomas occur sporadically, however, about 5% of all cases occur in a familial setting, of which over half are due to multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 (MEN-1) and Carney's complex (CNC). Since the late 1990s we have described non-MEN1/CNC familial pituitary tumours that include all tumour phenotypes, a condition named familial isolated pituitary adenomas (FIPA). The clinical characteristics of FIPA vary from those of sporadic pituitary adenomas, as patients with FIPA have a younger age at diagnosis and larger tumours. About 15% of FIPA patients have mutations in the aryl hydrocarbon receptor interacting protein gene (AIP), which indicates that FIPA may have a diverse genetic pathophysiology. This review describes the clinical features of familial pituitary adenomas like MEN1, the MEN 1-like syndrome MEN-4, CNC, FIPA, the tumour pathologies found in this setting and the genetic/molecular data that have been recently reported.

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