Juan Rosai as master of our comprehensive understanding of thymus and thymoma

Mirella Marino, Alexander Marx, Lucia Anemona, Libero Lauriola, Philipp Ströbel, Hans Konrad Müller-Hermelink

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


In this study, the authors report on the activity of Juan Rosai, one of the pathologists most engaged in the definition of cells, diseases and tumors occurring in the thymus and in the mediastinum during the last 60 years. With his morphological skills and tireless interest in clarification of disease patterns, he contributed extraordinarily to expand our knowledge of the mediastinal diseases and to improve our diagnostic approach. He determined extraordinary advances also in trasmission electron microscopy and in immunohistochemistry as powerful diagnostic tools. Moreover, he proposed and promoted, together with an international panel of Pathologists, the World Health Classification of Thymic tumors as a definite progress in our comprehension and diagnostics of thymic epithelial tumors (TET). Our purpose is to review J. Rosai's achievements in thymic normal structure, in TET and particularly in the entity now definied as “thymoma”, in distinction from the thymic carcinoma. To do this, our narrative will also be based on personal memories, longstanding collaborations and/or friendship with J. Rosai.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)360-370
Number of pages11
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2021


  • Classification
  • Mediastinum
  • Pathology
  • Thymoma
  • Thymus


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