Pan-Trk Immunohistochemistry Is an Efficient and Reliable Screen for the Detection of NTRK Fusions

Jaclyn F Hechtman, Ryma Benayed, David M Hyman, Alexander Drilon, Ahmet Zehir, Denise Frosina, Maria E Arcila, Snjezana Dogan, David S Klimstra, Marc Ladanyi, Achim A Jungbluth
American Journal of Surgical Pathology 2017, 41 (11): 1547-1551
Activating neurotrophic tyrosine receptor kinase (NTRK) fusions, typically detected using nucleic-acid based assays, are highly targetable and define certain tumors. Here, we explore the utility of pan-TRK immunohistochemistry (IHC) to detect NTRK fusions. NTRK rearrangements were detected prospectively using MSK-IMPACT, a DNA-based next-generation sequencing assay. Transcription of novel NTRK rearrangements into potentially functional fusion transcripts was assessed via Archer Dx fusion assay. Pan-Trk IHC testing with mAb EPR17341 was performed on all NTRK rearranged cases and 20 cases negative for NTRK fusions on Archer. Of 23 cases with NTRK rearrangements, 15 had known activating fusions. Archer detected fusion transcripts in 6 of 8 novel NTRK rearrangements of uncertain functional significance. Pan-Trk IHC was positive in 20 of 21 cases with NTRK fusion transcripts confirmed by Archer. The discordant negative case was a mismatch repair- deficient colorectal carcinoma with an ETV6-NTRK3 fusion. All 20 additional Archer-negative cases had concordant pan-TRK IHC results. Pan-Trk IHC sensitivity and specificity for transcribed NTRK fusions was 95.2% and 100%, respectively. All positive IHC cases had cytoplasmic staining while the following fusion partner-specific patterns were discovered: all 5 LMNA-NTRK1 fusions displayed nuclear membrane accentuation, all 4 TPM3/4 fusions displayed cellular membrane accentuation, and half (3/6) of ETV6-NTRK3 fusions displayed nuclear staining. Pan-Trk IHC is a time-efficient and tissue-efficient screen for NTRK fusions, particularly in driver-negative advanced malignancies and potential cases of secretory carcinoma and congenital fibrosarcoma. Pan-Trk IHC can help determine whether translation occurs for novel NTRK rearrangements.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"