Genetic Syndromes Predisposing to Tumors of Central Nervous System in Children


Klin Onkol 2016; 29(Suppl 1): 71-77. DOI: 10.14735/amko2016S71.


The overall incidence of childhood malignancies is rather low. Central nervous system tumours constitute the largest group of solid tumours among children. In contrast to adult population, a genetic predisposition is frequently associated with these malignancies (it is assumed to occur in approximately 15–25% of all childhood tumours) and there is also a number of monogenic hereditary syndromes known to be associated with brain tumours. Aim: The purpose of this article is to present an overview of genetic syndromes reported to increase the risk of childhood central nervous system tumours. The outlined tumour predispositions are divided into two groups. Firstly, syndromes with multisystem manifestation, where neoplasia is one of the components, whereas the distinguishing symptom is usually non-oncological. Secondly, there are syndromes that are diagnosed by the associated neoplasm withou any other noticeable phenotypic manifestation. A brief description of particular diseases is provided with a focus on associated central nervous system tumours. Detection of a tumour predisposition in a child is important not only for the child itself, but also for its family relatives. Often, a modification of treatment is necessary in regards to a genetic diagnosis. With the evolution of personalised medicine the possibility of “tailored” therapy will probably be a demanded solution. Last but not least, it is crucial to provide the child with a specialised preventive care owing to the risk of another potential malignancy. The diagnosis of hereditary cancer predisposition has also a big impact on the relatives of the patient. It enables to specify their oncological risk and arrange a specialised preventive care program, if needed. For high-risk parents planning another pregnancy there is a possibility to prevent the transfer of a certain disposition with the aid of preimplantation and prenatal genetic testing.

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