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To summarize a comprehensive overview of more recent evidence on micropapillary bladder cancer (MPBC), focusing on actual incidence, clinical features, therapeutic strategies, and prognosis. MPBC generally exhibits an aggressive behaviour compared with pure urothelial carcinoma (pUC) with advances in tumour stage and nodal and distant spread at diagnosis. Due to its rarity and presence of only small sample size and retrospective studies, no consensus currently exists regarding the most effective therapeutic strategy to be performed among nonmuscle-invasive (conservative treatment versus immediate radical cystectomy) and muscle-invasive MPBC (neoadjuvant therapy versus upfront radical cystectomy versus adjuvant chemotherapy). The incidence of MPBC is recently increased according to latter literature, ranging from 2.9 to 7.6% of all bladder cancer. Despite its aggressive behaviour at time of presentation, more recent evidence fails to demonstrate a significant association between MPBC and worse outcomes compared with pUC when adjusted for clinical and pathological features. According to latter evidence, MPBC pathological response to NAC appears to be unsatisfactory compared with pUC patients while neoadjuvant immunotherapy with Pembrolizumab may represent an effective treatment among MPBC patients, based on PD-L1 and TMB expression. Copyright © 2022 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.


Chiara Lonati, Claudio Simeone, Nazareno Suardi, Alberto Briganti, Francesco Montorsi, Marco Moschini. Micropapillary bladder cancer: an evolving biology. Current opinion in urology. 2022 Sep 01;32(5):504-510

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PMID: 35855578

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