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Pathology. 2017 Aug;49(5):499-505. doi: 10.1016/j.pathol.2017.04.004. Epub 2017 Jun 27.

PD-L1 expression predicts longer disease free survival in high risk head and neck cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma.

Author information

1
Department of Tissue Pathology and Diagnostic Oncology, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney, Australia.
2
Sydney Head and Neck Cancer Institute, Chris O'Brien Lifehouse, Sydney, Australia; Central Clinical School, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia.
3
School of Biological Sciences, University of Wollongong, Wollongong, Australia; Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute (IHMRI), Wollongong, Australia; Illawarra and Shoalhaven Local Health District (ISLHD), Wollongong, Australia; Centre for Oncology Education and Research Translation (CONCERT), Liverpool, Australia.
4
Sydney Head and Neck Cancer Institute, Chris O'Brien Lifehouse, Sydney, Australia; Central Clinical School, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia; Institute of Academic Surgery at RPA Hospital, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia.
5
School of Biological Sciences, University of Wollongong, Wollongong, Australia; Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute (IHMRI), Wollongong, Australia; Centre for Oncology Education and Research Translation (CONCERT), Liverpool, Australia.
6
Central Clinical School, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia; Department of Medical Oncology, Chris O'Brien Lifehouse, Sydney, Australia.
7
Sydney Head and Neck Cancer Institute, Chris O'Brien Lifehouse, Sydney, Australia; Central Clinical School, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia; South West Clinical School, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW, Australia.
8
Department of Tissue Pathology and Diagnostic Oncology, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney, Australia; Central Clinical School, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia. Electronic address: Ruta.Gupta@sswahs.nsw.gov.au.

Abstract

Programmed cell death (PD-1) and its ligand (PD-L1) inhibitors have shown clinical response in many tumours. PD-L1 data are limited in head and neck cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (HNcSCC) and no clinical trials of PD-1/PD-L1 inhibitors are published. We performed PD-L1 immunohistochemistry on 74 cases of high risk HNcSCC with 38 matched metastases and evaluated clinicopathological associations, prognostic significance and heterogeneity in matched metastases. We observed PD-L1 expression in >5% of primary tumour cells in 29 cases (39.2%), primary tumour infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) in 40 cases (70.2%), metastatic tumour cells in 15 cases (39.5%), and metastatic TILs in 18 cases (47.4%). PD-L1 expression in >5% of primary tumour cells was associated with an inflammatory phenotype (p = 0.04), and in primary TILs with clear margins (p = 0.05). PD-L1 expression in >5% of primary tumour cells (p = 0.01), primary TILs (p = 0.001), and metastatic TILs (p = 0.02) was associated with improved disease free survival. PD-L1 expression in >5% of tumour cells was heterogeneous between primary and metastatic tumours in 13 cases (34.2%). PD-L1 expression is common in HNcSCC supporting the rationale for a clinical trial of PD-1/PD-L1 inhibitors. PD-L1 expression in tumour cells or TILs predicts longer disease free survival and demonstrates temperospatial heterogeneity.

KEYWORDS:

PD-1; PD-L1; Skin cancer; disease-free survival; immunohistochemistry; squamous cell carcinoma; tumour biomarkers; tumour heterogeneity; tumour microenvironment

PMID:
28666643
DOI:
10.1016/j.pathol.2017.04.004
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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