Special Issue "Thyroid Carcinoma"

A special issue of Cancers (ISSN 2072-6694). This special issue belongs to the section "Cancer Pathophysiology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2022.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Maria João Bugalho
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
1. Head of Endocrine Service, Hospital de Santa Maria – CHULN, Lisboa, Portugal
2. Associate Professor of Faculty of Medicine, the University of Lisbon, Lisboa, Portugal
Interests: thyroid cancer; multiple endocrine neoplasia; pituitary tumors; neuroendocrine tumors; pheochromocytoma

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Thyroid carcinoma is the most common endocrine malignancy with a raising incidence in developed countries likely to be related to the greater use of imaging methods, although environmental causes cannot be excluded. Management of these incidentally discovered tumors is not consensual.

Depending on the cell of origin, thyroid carcinoma is further subdivided into follicular-cell derived or C-cell derived. The embryological origin and the enzymatic machinery of these two cell types are different with an impact on clinical presentation and therapeutic approach. Follicular cells are able to uptake iodine and synthesize thyroid hormones whereas C cells secrete calcitonin. On the other hand, follicular-cell derived carcinomas range from differentiated, the most frequent histological subtype, to poorly differentiated or even, more rarely, to undifferentiated.

Thyroid carcinoma has attracted the attention of several researchers for different reasons.

The first historical landmark, at the end of the 1940s, was the use of 131I for the treatment of well-differentiated metastatic carcinomas originating in the follicular epithelium. The rationale for its use was based on the knowledge that follicular cells had the potential to capture iodine. Since this is a specific property of this type of cell, we can say that 131I was probably one of the first targeted therapies to be used. So far, the 131I remains the adjuvant therapy of choice for patients with metastatic disease. However, issues such as appropriate use and dosage remain controversial.

Medullary thyroid carcinoma, the specific type arising from C-cells, can be familial in 25% of cases with an autosomal dominant mode of transmission. It is among the first cancers whose features were exploited for prevention. In 1993, the identification of germline mutations in the RET proto-oncogene as the underlying cause of familial medullary thyroid carcinoma made possible the genetic screening of affected families. Almost thirty years after starting prophylactic thyroidectomies guided by genetic screening, it would be interesting to reevaluate data with a focus on long term outcomes.

Despite a general good response to the standard treatment (surgery with or without 131I), a few cases have an aggressive behavior and are refractory to 131I or, as is the case for medullary thyroid carcinoma, are not candidates for this treatment. A better understanding of the genetic alterations and of the dysregulated pathways in thyroid cancer led to the use of targeted therapies. In the past 8 years tyrosine kinase inhibitors became the mainstay of treatment for these cases. Whom, When, and How to treat remain evolving questions.

The latest advance relates to the approval, in May 2018, by the Food and Drug Administration of dabrafenib and trametinib administered together for the treatment of anaplastic thyroid cancer with BRAF V600E mutation. The first reports suggest that this combination is a highly promising targeted therapy with a potential to transform the outcome of some patients with anaplastic thyroid carcinoma one of the most aggressive solid cancers.

We invite physicians and researchers with an interest in the field of thyroid cancer to share their results and views toward an integrative knowledge.

Dr. Maria João Bugalho
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Cancers is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • radioiodine-refractory cancer
  • sodium/iodide symporter
  • targeted therapies
  • familial forms
  • undifferentiated cancer
  • biomarkers
  • genetics

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Prevalence of Central Compartment Lymph Node Metastases in Papillary Thyroid Micro-Carcinoma: A Retrospective Evaluation of Predictive Preoperative Features
Cancers 2021, 13(23), 6028; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers13236028 - 30 Nov 2021
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Papillary thyroid micro-carcinomas are considered relatively indolent carcinomas, often occult and incidental, with good prognosis and favorable outcomes. Despite these findings, central lymph node metastases are common, and are related to a poor prognosis for the patient. We performed a retrospective analysis on [...] Read more.
Papillary thyroid micro-carcinomas are considered relatively indolent carcinomas, often occult and incidental, with good prognosis and favorable outcomes. Despite these findings, central lymph node metastases are common, and are related to a poor prognosis for the patient. We performed a retrospective analysis on patients treated with surgery for stage pT1a papillary thyroid micro-carcinomas. One hundred ninety-five patients were included in the analyses. The presence of central lymph node metastases was identified and studied. A multivariate analysis employing binary logistic regression was used to calculate adjusted odds ratios with 95% confidence intervals of possible central lymph node metastases risk factors. In the performed multivariate analysis, male gender, younger age, and histopathological characteristics, such as a tumor sub-capsular localization, were significantly associated with central lymph node metastases in pT1a patients. Central compartment lymph node metastases are present in a non-negligible number of cases in patients with papillary thyroid micro-carcinoma undergoing surgical resection. Studying these factors could be an effective tool for predicting patients’ central lymph node metastases in papillary thyroid micro-carcinomas, defining a tailored surgical treatment in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Thyroid Carcinoma)
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