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ISSN: 1233-9687
Polish Journal of Pathology
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vol. 74
Original paper

Prognosis-related novel immunostaining pattern for programmed cell death ligand 1 and prognostic value of tumour-infiltrating lymphocytes in triple-negative breast cancer

Pınar Savaş
Gürdeniz Serin
Pınar Gürsoy
Osman Zekioğlu
Necmettin Özdemir

Department of Pathology, Ege University School of Medicine, Izmir, Turkey
Ege University School of Medicine, Tulay Aktas Oncology Hospital, Izmir, Turkey
Pol J Pathol 2023; 74 (2): 65-74
Online publish date: 2023/06/28
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This study aims to determine the prognostic significance of programmed cell death ligand 1 (PD-L1) expression and tumour-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) in triple- negative breast cancer (TNBC).

PD-L1 expression and TIL percentage were determined in TNBCs that did not receive neoadjuvant therapy. The relationship between PD-L1 expression and the percentage of TILs with survival was investigated.

The presence of intratumoural PD-L1-positive tumour-infiltrating immune cells (TIICs) in tumours with ≥ 1% PD-L1 expression was identified as a new PD-L1 evaluation parameter. The presence of intratumoural PD-L1-positive TIICs as a new parameter in PD-L1-positive cases increased overall survival. The percentage of TILs increased in both overall and distant metastasis-free survival (p = 0.040 and p = 0.006, respectively). As a result, it was found that the risk of death was increased 5.18-fold (p = 0.013) in patients without intratumoural PD-L1-positive TIICs. This risk of death was calculated to be 5.40-fold higher in patients with TIL percentage ≤ 10% than in those with > 40% (p = 0.024), and the risk of distant metastasis was calculated to be 11.95 times higher.

In our study, we discovered that the percentage of TILs made a statistically significant difference in TNBC survival. The presence of intratumoural PD-L1-positive TIICs in PD-L1-positive cases significantly increased survival.

immune checkpoint blockade, programmed cell death 1, programmed cell death ligand 1, triple-negative breast cancer, tumour-infiltrating lymphocyte

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