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GIST in a reference cancer center in México


Gastrointestinal stromal tumours (GIST) are rare malignancies characterised by their association with KIT oncogene mutations. Until now, population-based reports of the incidence or survival of kit-confirmed GIST have been rare, and none have originated in México.

Materials and methods

We reviewed the files in the Instituto Nacional de Cancerología to identify malignant mesenchymal tumours of the digestive tract between 1995 and 2005, and performed c-kit testing in the tumour samples.


Seventeen cases were found with 88% of GIST localised in the stomach, 5.8% in small intestine, and 5.8% in esophagus. Fifthy-eight percent were classified as high risk of an aggressive behaviour and 42% as low or very low risk. Only one patient received treatment with imatinib mesilate and three had radiotherapy. The relative 3-year survival rate was 29.4% for the entire cohort.


We report the first review of incidence in a referral cancer center in México. The incidence rate is low and comparable with that of cancer registries from Northern America and Europe. Survival was favourable in our pre-imatinib population although it was low in high-risk cases. Prognostic discrimination of the cases with intermediate, low, or very low risk is inadequate, and these categories should be considered jointly in the future. Our results will help researchers in establishing baseline values against which they can compare in the future, the impact of imatinib and other Kit tyrosine inhibitors on survival.

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Correspondence to Horacio Noe López-Basave.

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Open Access This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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López-Basave, H.N., Morales-Vázquez, F., Ochoa, E.P. et al. GIST in a reference cancer center in México. BMC Cancer 7 (Suppl 1), A51 (2007).

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