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Recurrent pure CNS germinoma with markedly elevated serum and cerebrospinal fluid human chorionic gonadotropin-beta (HCGβ)


  • Conflict of interest: Nothing to declare.


Controversy continues regarding what level of serum and/or cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) human chorionic gonadotrophin-beta (HCGβ) is consistent with pure germinoma of the central nervous system (CNS). We report a 10-year female with biopsy-proven pure germinoma and normal serum and CSF HCGβ who experienced subsequent biopsy-proven recurrences of germinoma. At recurrence, serum and CSF HCGβ levels were 560 and 3,202 mIU/ml, respectively, although final autopsy demonstrated pure germinoma. This case illustrates the need to re-evaluate the assumption that pathologically pure germinomas may be associated with high levels of HCGβ which are unrelated to nongerminomatous germ cell tumor (NGGCT)/choriocarcinomatous elements. Pediatr Blood Cancer 2011;56:863–864. © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.