Department of Respiratory Medicine, Shanghai Chest Hospital, Shanghai Jiao Tong University
Purpose: To explore the possible correlation between programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1)/tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL) status and clinical factors in non-small cell lung (NSCLC).
Materials and Methods: A total of 126 surgical NSCLC samples with stage I to IIIA were retrospectively collected and analyzed. Immunohistochemistry (IHC) assays were used to detect PD-L1 protein expression. PD-L1 positivity on tumor cells was defined by positive tumor cell (TC) percentage using 5% cutoff value.
Results: Thirty-seven patients (29.4%), thirty patients (23.8%), six patients (4.8%) and fifty-three patients (42%) were classified as type I (PD-L1+, TIL+), type II (PD-L1-, TIL-), type III (PD-L1+, TIL-) and type IV (PD-L1-, TIL+) tumor environments according to PD-L1/TIL status, respectively. Statistical differences could be observed in factors including gender (P<0.001), smoking status (P<0.001), age (P=0.002), histological types (P<0.001), EGFR mutation (P=0.008) and KRAS mutation (P=0.003) across the four type tumors. Type I tumors were associated with ever smoking, non-adenocarcinoma histological types and KRAS mutation. Type II tumors were associated with female gender, never-smoking, adenocarcinoma histological types and EGFR mutation. Type III tumors were associated with ever smoking and type IV tumors were associated with female gender and EGFR mutation.
Conclusion: Clinical factors associated with NSCLC microenvironment types based on PD-L1/TIL differed a lot across different types. The findings of this study may help to facilitate the understanding of the relationship between tumor microenvironment and clinical factors, and also the selecting of patients for combination immunotherapies.
Keywords: Programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1), tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL), non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), immunotherapy.