Stains & CD markers

Topic Completed: 1 November 2013

Minor changes: 21 June 2021

Copyright: 2002-2021,, Inc.

PubMed Search: PAX2 [title]

Nat Pernick, M.D.
Page views in 2020: 3,506
Page views in 2021 to date: 2,444
Cite this page: Pernick N. PAX2. website. Accessed September 21st, 2021.
Definition / general
  • Paired-box 2; nuclear transcription factor, structurally similar to PAX8 with virtually identical expression in nonneoplastic tissue
  • Essential in embryonic development of Müllerian organs and hindbrain
  • Suppressed through promoter methylation at later stages of embryonic development but is reactivated during carcinogenesis (J Cell Mol Med 2013;17:1048)
Clinical features
Uses by pathologists
Microscopic (histologic) images

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Kidney, multicystic dysplasia

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Kidney, hemangioblastoma

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Skin, nevi, melanoma

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Kidney, fetal

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Fallopian tube

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Ovary, high grade carcinomas

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Uterus, endometrial intraepithelial neoplasia

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Bladder / GU: nephrogenic adenoma

Positive staining - normal
Positive staining - disease
Negative staining
  • Adenomatoid tumor
  • Bladder: clear cell adenocarcinoma (usually)
  • Kidney: angiomyolipoma with epithelial cysts and synovial sarcoma are negative but PAX2 and PAX8 often positive in epithelial cysts, likely due to entrapment and dilation of renal tubules (Am J Surg Pathol 2011;35:1264)
  • Kidney: carcinoid
  • Kidney: Ewing / PNET, neuroblastoma, T ALL
  • Mesothelioma (Appl Immunohistochem Mol Morphol 2012;20:272)
  • Testis: normal seminiferous tubules or interstitium; germ cell tumors, Leydig cell tumors, Sertoli cell tumors (Am J Surg Pathol 2011;35:1473)
  • Uterus: usually (71%) loss of PAX2 staining
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