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Elucidation of the relationships of MET protein expression and gene copy number status with PD-L1 expression and the immune microenvironment in non-small cell lung cancer.
Lung Cancer ( IF 4.599 ) Pub Date : 2020-01-07 , DOI: 10.1016/j.lungcan.2020.01.005
Katsuhiro Yoshimura,Yusuke Inoue,Kazuo Tsuchiya,Masato Karayama,Hidetaka Yamada,Yuji Iwashita,Akikazu Kawase,Masayuki Tanahashi,Hiroshi Ogawa,Naoki Inui,Kazuhito Funai,Kazuya Shinmura,Hiroshi Niwa,Takafumi Suda,Haruhiko Sugimura

OBJECTIVES Alterations in the MET gene, such as mutations and high-level amplification, are important drivers of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). The efficacy of immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) in lung cancer with MET abnormalities is unclear. We evaluate the potential relationship between MET alterations and the tumor immune microenvironment and PD-1/PD-L1 axis. MATERIAL AND METHODS MET and phospho-MET protein expression were assessed in 622 resected NSCLC specimens. MET amplification was assessed by fluorescence in-situ hybridization in 272 tumors. PD-L1 expression was evaluated by immunohistochemistry. CD8+, Foxp3+, CD45RO, and PD-1+ tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) in the tumor nest and surrounding stroma were profiled. Associations with MET alterations were explored. RESULTS The cohort comprised 425 male patients (68.3 %), 184 never-smokers (29.6 %), and 408 adenocarcinoma (ADC) patients (65.6 %). Median age was 68 years. MET alteration was observed mainly in ADCs (18.9 % MET-positive, 3.9 % phospho-MET-positive, and 15.1 % with MET amplification). PD-L1 expression was significantly increased in MET-altered ADCs (P < 0.001 for MET; P = 0.002 for phospho-MET; P = 0.019 for MET amplification). Most TIL subset numbers in the tumor nest were significantly increased in MET-altered tumors. Only MET amplification was independently associated with tumoral CD8 + TILs. Three of the six patients responded to ICI treatment; two of them showed MET overexpression and an increase in MET copy number. CONCLUSION MET-altered tumors showed significantly stronger PD-L1 expression and more abundant tumoral TILs than non-MET-altered tumors. Among the MET alterations assessed, MET amplification was particularly implicated in the inflamed microenvironment, suggesting that MET-amplified tumors might respond to ICIs.
更新日期:2020-01-07

 

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