The term was coined by Dr. Nancy E. Warner upon noticing tumor cells with empty nuclei or those showing just a thin rim of peripheral chromatin in sections of papillary thyroid carcinoma. The appearance of these abnormal nuclei to Dr. Nancy Warner, resembled the “Eyes Of Orphan Annie”. Little Orphan Annie was a daily comic strip created by American cartoonist Harold Gray which was quite popular in the period of 1894-1968.
Orphan Annie-eye nuclei are characteristically seen in
- Papillary thyroid carcinoma
- Polymorphous low-grade adenocarcinoma
- Cribriform adenocarcinoma of tongue
- Autoimmune thyroiditis: Hashimoto’s disease, Grave’s disease, and nodular goitre.