The adaptor protein NHERF1 (Na/H exchanger-3 regulatory factor-1) and its associated ezrin-radixin-moesin-merlin/neurofibromin-2 (ERM-NF2) family proteins are required for epithelial morphogenesis and have been implicated in cancer progression. NHERF1 is expressed in ependymal cells and constitutes a highly sensitive diagnostic marker for ependymoma, where it labels membrane polarity structures. Since NHERF1 and ERM-NF2 proteins show polarized expression in choroid plexus (CP) cells, we tested their diagnostic utility in CP neoplasms. NHERF1 immunohistochemistry in 43 adult and pediatric tumors with papillary morphology revealed strong apical plasma membrane staining in CP papilloma (WHO grade I) and cytoplasmic expression in CP carcinoma (WHO grade III). Ezrin and moesin showed similar but less distinctive staining. NHERF1 also labeled papillary tumors of the pineal region in a microlumen and focal apical membrane pattern, suggestive of a transitional morphology between CP papilloma and ependymoma. CP tumors of all grades could be differentiated from metastatic carcinomas with papillary architecture by NF2, which showed polarized membranous staining in CP tumors. NHERF1 and NF2 immunohistochemistry showed enhanced sensitivity and specificity for CP tumors compared to commonly used markers, including cytokeratins and Kir7.1, emerging as reliable diagnostic tools for the differential diagnosis of papillary tumors of the central nervous system.
Georgescu, M. M., Mobley, B. C., Orr, B. A., Shang, P., Lehman, N. L., Zhu, X., … Raisanen, J. M. (2016). NHERF1/EBP50 and NF2 as diagnostic markers for choroid plexus tumors. Acta Neuropathologica Communications, 4(1), 55. https://doi.org/10.1186/s40478-016-0329-0