A paper presented during the 2020 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Virtual Scientific Program last weekend showed that histologic subtypes of metastatic renal cell carcinoma (RCC) differ in the location of their metastases.

For example, lung, adrenal, brain, and pancreatic metastases occur more frequently with clear cell RCC than with papillary RCC or chromophobe RCC. Spread to the lymph nodes was most frequent in metastatic papillary RCC, and liver metastases were most frequent in chromophobe RCC.

The researchers concluded “These data highlight the clinical and biologic variability between histologic subtypes of mRCC…..Patterns of metastatic spread may reflect differences in underlying disease biology.”

In addition, patients with papillary RCC had lower overall survival compared with patients with clear cell RCC, regardless of site of metastases. There were no differences in overall survival between patients with clear cell RCC and chromophobe RCC.