Relationship between the expressions of PD-L1 and tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes in oral squamous cell carcinoma

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Cho, Young-Ah; Yoon, Hye-Jung; Lee, Jae-Il; Hong, Sam-Pyo; Hong, Seong-Doo

Issue Date
Oral Oncology; Vol.47, No.12, pp.1148-1153
Cancer immunityPD-L1Tumor-associated fibroblastsOral squamous cell carcinomaCD8 + lymphocytesTumor-infiltrating lymphocytes
Tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) are considered to represent immune reactions of the host to a malignant tumor. Programmed death receptor ligand-1 (PD-L1) is a surface protein that blocks the function of T lymphocytes and is expressed on cancer cells. Tumor-associated fibroblasts (TAFs), which influence tumor growth have also been reported to express PD-L1 and thus inhibit TILs. In the present study, we investigated the densities of CD4 +/CD8 + TILs, PD-L1 expression of tumor cells and TAFs in oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC). Forty-five cases of OSCC were selected. We evaluated PD-L1 expression and the infiltration degree of each lymphocyte by immunohistochemical examination. These data were analyzed in connection with clinicopathological factors. Peritumoral CD8 + TILs were observed in every patient with OSCC, and their densities were correlated with lymph node metastasis (P < 0.001), tumor size (P = 0.003), and clinical stage (P < 0.001). PD-L1 expression on OSCC cells was observed in 39 cases and was associated with the lower density of intratumoral CD8 + TILs (P = 0.047). PD-L1 expression of tumors <4 cm in size was correlated with the histological grade of the tumor (P = 0.022). TAFs were positive for PD-L1 in 18 cases. Peritumoral TILs were significantly associated with tumor size, lymph node metastasis and clinical stage. Though PD-L1 expressed by OSCC cells did not affect patients` survival, its correlation with decreased number of intratumoral TILs suggests that the development of a strategy to block the interactions of PD-L1 with TIL would be a useful tool for inhibiting tumor growth. ⓒ 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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College of Dentistry/School of Dentistry (치과대학/치의학대학원)Dept. of Dentistry (치의학과)Journal Papers (저널논문_치의학과)
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