Gene Summary

Gene:TLR1; toll like receptor 1
Aliases: TIL, CD281, rsc786, TIL. LPRS5
Summary:The protein encoded by this gene is a member of the Toll-like receptor (TLR) family which plays a fundamental role in pathogen recognition and activation of innate immunity. TLRs are highly conserved from Drosophila to humans and share structural and functional similarities. They recognize pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) that are expressed on infectious agents, and mediate the production of cytokines necessary for the development of effective immunity. The various TLRs exhibit different patterns of expression. This gene is ubiquitously expressed, and at higher levels than other TLR genes. Different length transcripts presumably resulting from use of alternative polyadenylation site, and/or from alternative splicing, have been noted for this gene. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:VEGA, OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:toll-like receptor 1
Source:NCBIAccessed: 16 March, 2017


What does this gene/protein do?
Show (23)
Pathways:What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
Show (1)

Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1992-2017)
Graph generated 16 March 2017 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic.

  • Papillomavirus Infections
  • African Americans
  • Immunity
  • Cancer Gene Expression Regulation
  • Cervical Cancer
  • Multigene Family
  • Genome-Wide Association Study
  • Linkage Disequilibrium
  • Chromosome 4
  • Immunity, Innate
  • Toll-Like Receptors
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Genetic Variation
  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Genotype
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Triple Negative Breast Cancer
  • Genetic Predisposition
  • European Continental Ancestry Group
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Single Nucleotide Polymorphism
  • Toll-Like Receptor 6
  • Odds Ratio
  • Western Blotting
  • Transcriptome
  • Toll-Like Receptor 10
  • Ligands
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Toll-Like Receptor 1
  • Toll-Like Receptor 4
  • Genetic Association Studies
  • Carcinoma
  • Risk Factors
  • China
  • Messenger RNA
  • Young Adult
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Signal Transduction
  • Breast Cancer
Tag cloud generated 16 March, 2017 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (5)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).

Latest Publications: TLR1 (cancer-related)

Dong ZY, Wu SP, Liao RQ, et al.
Potential biomarker for checkpoint blockade immunotherapy and treatment strategy.
Tumour Biol. 2016; 37(4):4251-61 [PubMed] Related Publications
Programmed cell death protein-1 (PD-1) and ligand (PD-L1) provide an important escape mechanism from immune attack, and blockade therapy of these proteins show promising clinical benefits in many types of cancer. PD-L1 can be induced by interferon-gamma (IFN-γ), hypoxia, or toll-like receptor (TLR)-mediated pathways that confer adaptive immune resistance, or upregulated by oncogenic signals leading to constitutive expression and resulting in intrinsic immune resistance. The PD-1/PD-L1 checkpoint blockade, which targets regulatory pathways in T cells to overcome immune resistance, is correlated to PD-L1 expression pattern and the presence of tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs). Meanwhile, immunogenic mutation loads show significant response to checkpoint blockade, which is probably due to PD-1/L1 status and TIL content. Finally, the clinical strategies to design effective checkpoint-targeting immunotherapies are based on the classification of inducible/constitutive expression of PD-L1 and the presence of TILs.

Vilgelm AE, Johnson CA, Prasad N, et al.
Connecting the Dots: Therapy-Induced Senescence and a Tumor-Suppressive Immune Microenvironment.
J Natl Cancer Inst. 2016; 108(6):djv406 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Tumor cell senescence is a common outcome of anticancer therapy. Here we investigated how therapy-induced senescence (TIS) affects tumor-infiltrating leukocytes (TILs) and the efficacy of immunotherapy in melanoma.
METHODS: Tumor senescence was induced by AURKA or CDK4/6 inhibitors (AURKAi, CDK4/6i). Transcriptomes of six mouse tumors with differential response to AURKAi were analyzed by RNA sequencing, and TILs were characterized by flow cytometry. Chemokine RNA and protein expression were determined by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Therapeutic response was queried in immunodeficient mice, in mice with CCL5-deficient tumors, and in mice cotreated with CD137 agonist to activate TILs. CCL5 expression in reference to TIS and markers of TILs was studied in human melanoma tumors using patient-derived xenografts (n = 3 patients, n = 3 mice each), in AURKAi clinical trial samples (n = 3 patients, before/after therapy), and in The Cancer Genome Atlas (n = 278). All statistical tests were two-sided.
RESULTS: AURKAi response was associated with induction of the immune transcriptome (P = 3.5 x 10-29) while resistance inversely correlated with TIL numbers (Spearman r = -0.87, P < .001). AURKAi and CDK4/6i promoted the recruitment of TILs by inducing CCL5 secretion in melanoma cells (P ≤ .005) in an NF-κB-dependent manner. Therapeutic response to AURKAi was impaired in immunodeficient compared with immunocompetent mice (0% vs 67% tumors regressed, P = .01) and in mice bearing CCL5-deficient vs control tumors (P = .61 vs P = .02); however, AURKAi response was greatly enhanced in mice also receiving T-cell-activating immunotherapy (P < .001). In human tumors, CCL5 expression was also induced by AURKAi (P ≤ .02) and CDK4/6i (P = .01) and was associated with increased immune marker expression (P = 1.40 x 10-93).
CONCLUSIONS: Senescent melanoma cells secret CCL5, which promotes recruitment of TILs. Combining TIS with immunotherapy that enhances tumor cell killing by TILs is a promising novel approach to improve melanoma outcomes.

Wong SQ, Waldeck K, Vergara IA, et al.
UV-Associated Mutations Underlie the Etiology of MCV-Negative Merkel Cell Carcinomas.
Cancer Res. 2015; 75(24):5228-34 [PubMed] Related Publications
Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is an uncommon, but highly malignant, cutaneous tumor. Merkel cell polyoma virus (MCV) has been implicated in a majority of MCC tumors; however, viral-negative tumors have been reported to be more prevalent in some geographic regions subject to high sun exposure. While the impact of MCV and viral T-antigens on MCC development has been extensively investigated, little is known about the etiology of viral-negative tumors. We performed targeted capture and massively parallel DNA sequencing of 619 cancer genes to compare the gene mutations and copy number alterations in MCV-positive (n = 13) and -negative (n = 21) MCC tumors and cell lines. We found that MCV-positive tumors displayed very low mutation rates, but MCV-negative tumors exhibited a high mutation burden associated with a UV-induced DNA damage signature. All viral-negative tumors harbored mutations in RB1, TP53, and a high frequency of mutations in NOTCH1 and FAT1. Additional mutated or amplified cancer genes of potential clinical importance included PI3K (PIK3CA, AKT1, PIK3CG) and MAPK (HRAS, NF1) pathway members and the receptor tyrosine kinase FGFR2. Furthermore, looking ahead to potential therapeutic strategies encompassing immune checkpoint inhibitors such as anti-PD-L1, we also assessed the status of T-cell-infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL) and PD-L1 in MCC tumors. A subset of viral-negative tumors exhibited high TILs and PD-L1 expression, corresponding with the higher mutation load within these cancers. Taken together, this study provides new insights into the underlying biology of viral-negative MCC and paves the road for further investigation into new treatment opportunities.

Loi S, Dushyanthen S, Beavis PA, et al.
RAS/MAPK Activation Is Associated with Reduced Tumor-Infiltrating Lymphocytes in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer: Therapeutic Cooperation Between MEK and PD-1/PD-L1 Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors.
Clin Cancer Res. 2016; 22(6):1499-509 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
PURPOSE: Tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL) in the residual disease (RD) of triple-negative breast cancers (TNBC) after neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC) are associated with improved survival, but insight into tumor cell-autonomous molecular pathways affecting these features are lacking.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: We analyzed TILs in the RD of clinically and molecularly characterized TNBCs after NAC and explored therapeutic strategies targeting combinations of MEK inhibitors with PD-1/PD-L1-targeted immunotherapy in mouse models of breast cancer.
RESULTS: Presence of TILs in the RD was significantly associated with improved prognosis. Genetic or transcriptomic alterations in Ras-MAPK signaling were significantly correlated with lower TILs. MEK inhibition upregulated cell surface MHC expression and PD-L1 in TNBC cells both in vivo and in vitro. Moreover, combined MEK and PD-L1/PD-1 inhibition enhanced antitumor immune responses in mouse models of breast cancer.
CONCLUSIONS: These data suggest the possibility that Ras-MAPK pathway activation promotes immune-evasion in TNBC, and support clinical trials combining MEK- and PD-L1-targeted therapies. Furthermore, Ras/MAPK activation and MHC expression may be predictive biomarkers of response to immune checkpoint inhibitors.

Ding Y, Shen J, Zhang G, et al.
CD40 controls CXCR5-induced recruitment of myeloid-derived suppressor cells to gastric cancer.
Oncotarget. 2015; 6(36):38901-11 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
To explore the mechanisms of MDSC trafficking and accumulation during tumor progression. In this study, we report significant CD40 upregulation in tumor-infiltrating MDSC when compared with splenic MDSC. Microarray analyses comparing CD40(high) and CD40l(ow) MDSC revealed 1872 differentially expressed genes, including CD83, CXCR5, BTLA, CXCL9, TLR1, FLT3, NOD2 and CXCL10. In vivo experiments comparing wild-type (WT) and CD40 knockout (KO) mice demonstrated that CD40 critically regulates CXCR5 expression. Consistently, the transwell analysis confirmed the essential role of CXCR5-CXCL13 crosstalk in the migration of CD40+ MDSC toward gastric cancer. Furthermore, more MDSC accumulated in the gastric cancers of WT mice when compared with KO mice, and the WT tumors mostly contained CD40+ cells. Functionally, tumors grew faster in WT than KO mice. In conclusion, we demonstrate that CD40 expression upregulates the chemokine receptor CXCR5 and promotes MDSC migration toward and accumulation within cancer. Therefore, this study provides preliminary evidence that CD40 may stimulate tumor growth by enabling immune evasion via MDSC recruitment and inhibition of T cell expansion.

Ramqvist T, Mints M, Tertipis N, et al.
Studies on human papillomavirus (HPV) 16 E2, E5 and E7 mRNA in HPV-positive tonsillar and base of tongue cancer in relation to clinical outcome and immunological parameters.
Oral Oncol. 2015; 51(12):1126-31 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Three-year survival is 80% for human papillomavirus (HPV) positive tonsillar and base of tongue squamous cell carcinoma (TSCC and BOTSCC) and higher (95-100%) in patients with tumors without HLA class I expression, or with high CD8(+) tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte (TIL) counts. The former paradoxical, the latter expected, but it is known that E5 and E7 can downregulate HLA class I expression. Furthermore, upon HPV integration, E2, sometimes in combination with E5 is lost. Here, HPV16 E2, E5 and E7 mRNA was therefore examined in relation to HLA class I expression, TIL counts and survival.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: HPV16 DNA positive TSCC and BOTSCC biopsies, analyzed for HLA class I and CD8(+) TILs, of 133 patients, treated curatively between 2000 and 2011, were tested for HPV16 E2, E5 and E7 mRNA expression. Totally 127 samples could be evaluated and of these 117 patients, all with HPV16/E7-mRNA-positive tumors, were included in the final analysis.
RESULTS: Most tumors (92%) expressed E7 mRNA, and of these 64% also expressed E2 and E5 mRNA. Patients with tumors lacking E2 mRNA had worse 3-year relapse and progression free survival (p<0.01 and p<0.05), while presence of E5 had no impact on clinical outcome. Furthermore, HLA class I expression and TILs were not correlated to E5 or to E2 mRNA expression.
CONCLUSION: Lack of E2 but not E5 mRNA in HPV16 positive TSCC and BOTSCC was a negative prognostic marker. Presence of HPV16 E2, E5 and E7 mRNA expression was not correlated to HLA class I expression or CD8(+) TILs.

Lee HJ, Kim JY, Song IH, et al.
Expression of NY-ESO-1 in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Is Associated with Tumor-Infiltrating Lymphocytes and a Good Prognosis.
Oncology. 2015; 89(6):337-44 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Accumulating evidence suggests that immunotherapy has great potential for treating triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC). We analyzed the expression of NY-ESO-1, which is a potent immunogenic cancer testis antigen, and its association with clinicopathological factors in large cohorts of breast cancer patients.
METHODS: A total of 623 consecutive breast cancer patients who underwent surgery between 1993 and 1998 and 612 TNBC patients who underwent surgery between 2004 and 2010 at Asan Medical Center were included. Immunohistochemical staining for NY-ESO-1 was performed using tissue microarrays.
RESULTS: NY-ESO-1 was expressed in 2.6% of consecutive breast cancers, all of which were TNBC (p < 0.001). NY-ESO-1 expression was identified in 9.7% of the TNBC cohort and was significantly correlated with a higher level of tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL; p = 0.026). In survival analyses, a lower level of TIL (all, p < 0.001) and the absence of NY-ESO-1 expression (p = 0.024) were significantly associated with poor disease-free survival. Additionally, positive NY-ESO-1 expression was an independent favorable prognostic factor in TNBC patients (p = 0.046).
CONCLUSIONS: NY-ESO-1 is specifically expressed in TNBC, and NY-ESO-1 expression is an independent good prognostic factor in TNBC. Evaluation of NY-ESO-1 expression in TNBC might be useful for selecting patients who may benefit from vaccination therapy and also has a prognostic significance in TNBC.

Vassilakopoulou M, Avgeris M, Velcheti V, et al.
Evaluation of PD-L1 Expression and Associated Tumor-Infiltrating Lymphocytes in Laryngeal Squamous Cell Carcinoma.
Clin Cancer Res. 2016; 22(3):704-13 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Programmed death-ligand 1 (PD-L1; also known as CD274 or B7-H1) expression represents a mechanism of immune escape for cancer. Our purpose was to characterize tumor PD-L1 expression and associated T-cell infiltration in primary laryngeal squamous cell carcinomas (SCC).
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: A well-annotated cohort of 260 operable primary laryngeal SCCs [formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) specimens] was morphologically characterized for stromal tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL), on hematoxylin/eosin-stained whole sections and for PD-L1 mRNA expression by qRT-PCR in FFPE specimens. For PD-L1 protein expression, automated quantitative protein analysis (AQUA) was applied on tissue microarrays consisting of two cores from these tumors. In addition, PD-L1 mRNA expression in fresh-frozen tumors and normal adjacent tissue specimens was assessed in a second independent cohort of 89 patients with primary laryngeal SCC.
RESULTS: PD-L1 mRNA levels were upregulated in tumors compared with surrounding normal tissue (P = 0.009). TILs density correlated with tumor PD-L1 AQUA levels (P = 0.021). Both high TILs density and high PD-L1 AQUA levels were significantly associated with superior disease-free survival (DFS; TILs: P = 0.009 and PD-L1: P = 0.044) and overall survival (OS; TILs: P = 0.015 and PD-L1: P = 0.059) of the patients and retained significance in multivariate analysis.
CONCLUSIONS: Increased TILs density and PD-L1 levels are associated with better outcome in laryngeal squamous cell cancer. Assessment of TILs and PD-L1 expression could be useful to predict response to immune checkpoint inhibitors.

Bianchini G, Pusztai L, Pienkowski T, et al.
Immune modulation of pathologic complete response after neoadjuvant HER2-directed therapies in the NeoSphere trial.
Ann Oncol. 2015; 26(12):2429-36 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: To investigate in the NeoSphere trial the contribution of the immune system to pathologic complete response in the breast (pCRB) after neoadjuvant docetaxel with trastuzumab (TH), pertuzumab (TP), or both (THP), or monoclonal antibodies alone (HP).
PATIENTS AND METHODS: Immune gene mRNA expression (n = 350, 83.8%), lymphocyte infiltration (TIL, n = 243, 58.3%), and PDL1 by immunohistochemistry (n = 305, 73.1%) were correlated with pCRB. We studied five selected genes (IFNG, PD1, PDL1, PDL2, CTLA4) and six immune metagenes corresponding to plasma cells (IGG), T cells (CD8A), antigen-presenting cells (MHC2), and to MHC1 genes (MHC1), STAT1 co-expressed genes (STAT1), and interferon-inducible genes (IF-I). Gene expression data from the NOAH trial were used for validation.
RESULTS: TIL as continuous variable and PDL1 protein expression were not significantly associated with pCRB. Expression of immune genes/metagenes had different association with pCRB after THP than after other therapies. With THP, higher expression of PD1 and STAT1, or any among PDL1, CTLA4, MHC1, and IF-I were linked with lower pCRB. In the combined TH/TP/HP treatment group, in multivariate analysis, higher expression of PD1, MHC2, and STAT1 were linked with pCRB, and higher PDL1, MHC1, or IF-I to lower pCRB. In the NOAH, a similar association of higher STAT1 with higher pCRB, and higher MHC1 and IF-I with lower pCRB was found for trastuzumab/chemotherapy but not for chemotherapy treatment only.
CONCLUSIONS: The immune system modulates response to therapies containing trastuzumab and pertuzumab. Greatest benefit from THP is observed for low expression of some immune markers (i.e. MHC1, CTLA4). The involvement of PDL1 in resistance supports testing combinations of HER2-directed antibodies and immune-checkpoint inhibitors.

Fonte E, Agathangelidis A, Reverberi D, et al.
Toll-like receptor stimulation in splenic marginal zone lymphoma can modulate cell signaling, activation and proliferation.
Haematologica. 2015; 100(11):1460-8 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
Recent studies on splenic marginal zone lymphoma identified distinct mutations in genes belonging to the B-cell receptor and Toll-like receptor signaling pathways, thus pointing to their potential implication in the biology of the disease. However, limited data is available regarding the exact role of TLRs. We aimed at characterizing the expression pattern of TLRs in splenic marginal zone lymphoma cells and their functional impact on the activation, proliferation and viability of malignant cells in vitro. Cells expressed significant levels of TLR1, TLR6, TLR7, TLR8, TLR9 and TLR10 mRNA; TLR2 and TLR4 showed a low, variable pattern of expression among patients whereas TLR3 and TLR5 mRNAs were undetectable; mRNA specific for TLR signaling molecules and adapters was also expressed. At the protein level, TLR1, TLR6, TLR7, TLR9 and TLR10 were detected. Stimulation of TLR1/2, TLR2/6 and TLR9 with their respective ligands triggered the activation of IRAK kinases, MAPK and NF-κB signaling pathways, and the induction of CD86 and CD25 activation molecules, although in a heterogeneous manner among different patient samples. TLR-induced activation and cell viability were also inhibited by a specific IRAK1/4 inhibitor, thus strongly supporting the specific role of TLR signaling in these processes. Furthermore, TLR2/6 and TLR9 stimulation also significantly increased cell proliferation. In conclusion, we demonstrate that splenic marginal zone lymphoma cells are equipped with functional TLR and signaling molecules and that the stimulation of TLR1/2, TLR2/6 and TLR9 may play a role in regulating disease pathobiology, likely promoting the expansion of the neoplastic clone.

Liu JY, Li F, Wang LP, et al.
CTL- vs Treg lymphocyte-attracting chemokines, CCL4 and CCL20, are strong reciprocal predictive markers for survival of patients with oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma.
Br J Cancer. 2015; 113(5):747-55 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Tumoural infiltration of T lymphocytes is determined by local patterns of specific chemokine expression. In this report, we examined the roles of CCL4 and CCL20 in the accumulation of CD8(+) cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) and regulatory T (Treg) lymphocytes in oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), and determined the correlations between chemokine expressions and ESCC patients' survival.
METHODS: Reverse transcriptase-PCR and immunohistochemistry (IHC) staining were performed to examine the expressions of interested genes. Flow cytometry was adopted to check the expressions of CCL4- and CCL6-specific receptors, CCR5 and CCR6, on CTLs and Treg cells. In addition, transwell assay was carried on.
RESULTS: The CCL4 expression was significantly correlated with the expression of CTL markers (CD8 and Granzyme B), whereas CCL20 was positively correlated with Treg markers (FoxP3 and IL-10). Consistently, CCR5 was found to be mainly expressed on CD8(+) T lymphocytes, while CCR6 showed prevalence on Treg lymphocytes and the frequencies of CCR5(+)CD8(+) CTLs and CCR6(+) Treg cells were higher in TIL compared with PBMC. Respectively, CCL4 and CCL20 recruited CD8(+) and regulatory T cells in vitro. Importantly, high levels of CCL4 in the lesions of ESCC patients predicted prolonged survival. Furthermore, CCL4(high)/CCL20(low) group demonstrated better overall survival, whereas CCL4(low)/CCL20(low) and CCL4(low)/CCL20(high) groups showed the worst overall survival.
CONCLUSIONS: Our data showed that CCL4 and CCL20 recruit functionally different T lymphocyte subsets into oesophageal carcinoma, indicating CCL4 and CCL20 are potential predictors of ESCC patients' survival.

Cai C, Xu YF, Wu ZJ, et al.
Tim-3 expression represents dysfunctional tumor infiltrating T cells in renal cell carcinoma.
World J Urol. 2016; 34(4):561-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Renal cell carcinoma (RCC) is the most common cancer of kidney. Evidences have shown that RCC is sensitive to various immunotherapies. Tim-3 plays a role in suppressing Th1-mediated immune responses. However, no study has yet examined the effect of Tim-3 on tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) in RCC.
METHODS: We investigated the expression and function of Tim-3 on TIL CD4+ T cells and TIL CD8+ T cells from 30 RCC patients.
RESULTS: Levels of Tim-3 were significantly increased on both TIL CD4+ T cells and TIL CD8+ T cells and were associated with higher stages of the cancer. Also, GATA-3 and interferon gamma (IFN-γ) were down-regulated, whereas T-bet was up-regulated in TIL Tim-3+ T cells, indicating that Tim-3 expression defined a population of dysfunctional TIL Th1/Tc1 cells. Mechanism analyses showed that TIL Tim-3-expressing CD8+ T cells exhibited impaired Stat5 and p38 signaling pathway. Blocking the Tim-3 pathway restored cell proliferation and increased IFN-γ production in TIL CD4+ and CD8+ T cells of RCC.
CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that Tim-3 may be used as a novel target for increasing immune responses in RCC tumor microenvironment.

Abdel-Fatah TM, McArdle SE, Agarwal D, et al.
HAGE in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Is a Novel Prognostic, Predictive, and Actionable Biomarker: A Transcriptomic and Protein Expression Analysis.
Clin Cancer Res. 2016; 22(4):905-14 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: The expression of HAGE as a novel prognostic and predictive tool was assessed in 1,079 triple-negative breast cancers (TNBC).
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: HAGE protein expression was investigated in an early primary TNBC (EP-TNBC; n = 520) cohort who received adjuvant chemotherapy (ACT) and in a locally advanced primary TNBC cohort who received anthracycline combination Neo-ACT (n = 110; AC-Neo-ACT). HAGE-mRNA expression was evaluated in the METABRIC-TNBC cohort (n = 311) who received ACT and in a cohort of patients with TNBC who received doxorubicin/cyclophosphamide Neo-ACT, followed by 1:1 randomization to ixabepilone (n = 68) or paclitaxel (n = 64) as part of a phase II clinical trial. Furthermore, a cohort of 128 tumors with integrated HAGE gene copy number changes, mRNA, and protein levels were analyzed.
RESULTS: In patients with EP-TNBC, who were chemotherapy-naïve, high HAGE protein expression (HAGE(+)) was associated with a higher risk of death [HR, 1.3; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.2-1.5; P = 0.000005] when compared with HAGE(-) cases. Patients who received ACT and expressed mRNA-HAGE(+) were at a lower risk of death than those who were mRNA-HAGE(-) (P = 0.004). The expression of HAGE was linked to the presence of tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL), and both features were found to be independent predictors for pathologic complete response (pCR, P < 0.001) and associated with prolonged survival (P < 0.01), following AC-Neo-ACT. In patients with residual disease, HAGE(+) had a 2-fold death risk increase (P = 0.018) compared with HAGE(-).
CONCLUSIONS: HAGE expression is a potential prognostic marker and a predictor of response to anthracycline treatment in TNBC. A prospective clinical trial to examine the therapeutic value of HAGE for TNBC cases is warranted.

Chen DN, Song CG, Yu KD, et al.
A Prospective Evaluation of the Association between a Single Nucleotide Polymorphism rs3775291 in Toll-Like Receptor 3 and Breast Cancer Relapse.
PLoS One. 2015; 10(7):e0133184 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Toll-like receptors (TLRs) regulate the balance between the innate and adaptive immune responses. Missense single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in TLRs might be functional and thus influence the risks of chronic infection and cancer development. Here, we investigated the association of two missense SNPs, rs3775291 (c.1234G>A) in the TLR3 gene and rs4833095 (c.743T>C) in the TLR1 gene, with relapse-free survival (RFS) in a cohort of prospectively observed breast cancer patients.
METHODS: In this prospective observational study, rs3775291 in TLR3 and rs4833095 in TLR1 were genotyped in 715 patients with primary breast cancer in a Chinese population.
RESULTS: Univariate analysis revealed that the patients with the AA genotype of rs3775291 had a shorter RFS compared with those carrying the G allele in the recessive model (P<0.01), but this finding was not observed with the dominant model (P = 0.31). The results remained significant after adjusting for the clinical parameters in the recessive model (HR = 3.53, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.98-6.31, P<0.01). Further survival analysis indicated that this SNP was significant in the luminal-B, triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC), and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2-positive (HER2+) patients using the recessive model but that it was not significant in the luminal-A patients. The SNP rs4833095 showed a non-significant tendency toward an increased RFS rate in the patients with the TT genotype.
CONCLUSION: Our results suggest that the SNP rs3775291 in TLR3 may influence patient outcome. Further studies with larger sample sizes should be conducted to validate our findings.

Chen SX, Du SY, Wang YT, et al.
Retinoic acid morpholine amide (RAMA) inhibits expression of Fas ligand through EP1 receptor in colon cancer cells.
Tumour Biol. 2016; 37(1):323-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Among the members of tumour necrosis factor family Fas ligand on binding to its receptor strongly induces apoptosis of tumour-infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL). Thus, FasL acts as an inhibitor of anti-tumour immune response. The present study demonstrates that retinoic acid morpholine amide (RAMA) significantly suppresses FasL expression in colon cancer cells in a dose- and time-dependent manner. The suppression of FasL mRNA and proteins was significant at a concentration of 30 μM after 48 h in CLT85 and HT26 colon cancer cells. There was around 2.6- and 3.2-fold decrease in FasL mRNA after incubation with 30 μM of RAMA in CLT85 cells and HT26 cells, respectively. The results from Western blot showed a decrease in FasL mRNA and protein expression in both CLT85 and HT26 cells after suppression of cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 and COX-1 by RNAi. However, when COX-2-specific silencer RNA (siCOX-2)- and siCOX-1-treated CLT85 and HT26 cells were exposed to RAMA, inhibition of FasL expression was further suppressed. The siCOX-2-treated CLT85 and HT26 cells on exposure to RAMA showed ∼87 and ∼54 % reduction in FasL mRNA, respectively. Co-culture of Jurkat T cells with RAMA-treated HT26 and CLT85 cells decreased the viability of Jurkat T cells by only 2 and 4.3 %, respectively, compared to 19.5 and 37.3 % in control HT26 and CLT85 cells. The results from real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and immunoblotting showed that suppression of EP1 prevented RAMA-induced FasL suppression in CLT85 cells at both the mRNA and protein levels. Thus, RAMA can be a potent therapeutic agent for the treatment of colon tumours.

Donia M, Andersen R, Kjeldsen JW, et al.
Aberrant Expression of MHC Class II in Melanoma Attracts Inflammatory Tumor-Specific CD4+ T- Cells, Which Dampen CD8+ T-cell Antitumor Reactivity.
Cancer Res. 2015; 75(18):3747-59 [PubMed] Related Publications
In the absence of a local inflammatory response, expression of MHC class II molecules is restricted mainly to hematopoietic cells and thymus epithelium. However, certain tumors, such as melanoma, may acquire aberrant constitutive expression of MHC class II. In a set of primary melanoma cell populations and correspondingly expanded autologous tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL), we show how MHC class II expression on melanoma cells associates with strong MHC class II-restricted CD4(+) T-cell responses that are specific for tumors. Notably, we found that tumor-specific CD4(+) T-cell responses were dominated by TNF production. TNF reduced CD8(+) T-cell activation in IFNγ-rich environments resembling a tumor site. Conversely, direct CD4(+) T-cell responses had no influence on either the proliferation or viability of melanoma cells. Taken together, our results illustrate a novel immune escape mechanism that can be activated by aberrant expression of MHC class II molecules, which by attracting tumor-specific CD4(+) T cells elicit a local inflammatory response dominated by TNF that, in turn, inhibits cytotoxic CD8(+) T-cell responses

Thomas NE, Edmiston SN, Alexander A, et al.
Association Between NRAS and BRAF Mutational Status and Melanoma-Specific Survival Among Patients With Higher-Risk Primary Melanoma.
JAMA Oncol. 2015; 1(3):359-68 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
IMPORTANCE: NRAS and BRAF mutations in melanoma inform current treatment paradigms, but their role in survival from primary melanoma has not been established. Identification of patients at high risk of melanoma-related death based on their primary melanoma characteristics before evidence of recurrence could inform recommendations for patient follow-up and eligibility for adjuvant trials.
OBJECTIVE: To determine tumor characteristics and survival from primary melanoma by somatic NRAS and BRAF status.
DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: A population-based study with a median follow-up of 7.6 years (through 2007), including 912 patients from the United States and Australia in the Genes, Environment, and Melanoma (GEM) Study, with first primary cutaneous melanoma diagnosed in the year 2000 and analyzed for NRAS and BRAF mutations.
MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: Tumor characteristics and melanoma-specific survival of primary melanoma by NRAS and BRAF mutational status.
RESULTS: The melanomas were 13% NRAS+, 30% BRAF+, and 57% with neither NRAS nor BRAF mutation (wildtype [WT]). In a multivariable model including clinicopathologic characteristics, relative to WT melanoma (with results reported as odds ratios [95% CIs]), NRAS+ melanoma was associated with presence of mitoses (1.8 [1.0-3.3]), lower tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte (TIL) grade (nonbrisk, 0.5 [0.3-0.8]; and brisk, 0.3 [0.5-0.7] [vs absent TILs]), and anatomic site other than scalp/neck (0.1 [0.01-0.6] for scalp/neck vs trunk/pelvis), and BRAF+ melanoma was associated with younger age (ages 50-69 years, 0.7 [0.5-1.0]; and ages >70 years, 0.5 [0.3-0.8] [vs <50 years]), superficial spreading subtype (nodular, 0.5 [0.2-1.0]; lentigo maligna, 0.4 [0.2-0.7]; and unclassified/other, 0.2 [0.1-0.5] [vs superficial spreading]), and presence of mitoses (1.7 [1.1-2.6]) (P < .05 for all). There was no significant difference in melanoma-specific survival (reported as hazard ratios [95% CIs]) for melanoma harboring mutations in NRAS (1.7 [0.8-3.4]) or BRAF (1.5 [0.8-2.9]) compared with WT melanoma, as adjusted for age, sex, site, American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) tumor stage, TIL grade, and study center. However, melanoma-specific survival was significantly poorer for higher-risk (T2b or higher stage) tumors with NRAS (2.9 [1.1-7.7]) or BRAF (3.1 [1.2-8.5]) mutations (P = .04) but not for lower-risk (T2a or lower) tumors with NRAS (0.9 [0.3-3.0]) or BRAF (0.6 [0.2-1.7]) (P = .65), as adjusted for age, sex, site, AJCC tumor stage, TIL grade, and study center.
CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: Lower TIL grade for NRAS+ melanoma suggests it has a more immunosuppressed microenvironment, which may affect its response to immunotherapies. The approximate 3-fold increased risk of death for higher-risk tumors harboring NRAS or BRAF mutations after adjusting for other prognostic factors compared with WT melanomas indicates that the prognostic implication of these mutations deserves further investigation, particularly in higher–AJCC stage primary melanomas.

Maby P, Tougeron D, Hamieh M, et al.
Correlation between Density of CD8+ T-cell Infiltrate in Microsatellite Unstable Colorectal Cancers and Frameshift Mutations: A Rationale for Personalized Immunotherapy.
Cancer Res. 2015; 75(17):3446-55 [PubMed] Related Publications
Colorectal cancers with microsatellite instability (MSI) represent 15% of all colorectal cancers, including Lynch syndrome as the most frequent hereditary form of this disease. Notably, MSI colorectal cancers have a higher density of tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL) than other colorectal cancers. This feature is thought to reflect the accumulation of frameshift mutations in sequences that are repeated within gene coding regions, thereby leading to the synthesis of neoantigens recognized by CD8(+) T cells. However, there has yet to be a clear link established between CD8(+) TIL density and frameshift mutations in colorectal cancer. In this study, we examined this link in 103 MSI colorectal cancers from two independent cohorts where frameshift mutations in 19 genes were analyzed and CD3(+), CD8(+), and FOXP3(+) TIL densities were quantitated. We found that CD8(+) TIL density correlated positively with the total number of frameshift mutations. TIL densities increased when frameshift mutations were present within the ASTE1, HNF1A, or TCF7L2 genes, increasing even further when at least one of these frameshift mutations was present in all tumor cells. Through in vitro assays using engineered antigen-presenting cells, we were able to stimulate peripheral cytotoxic T cells obtained from colorectal cancer patients with peptides derived from frameshift mutations found in their tumors. Taken together, our results highlight the importance of a CD8(+) T cell immune response against MSI colorectal cancer-specific neoantigens, establishing a preclinical rationale to target them as a personalized cellular immunotherapy strategy, an especially appealing goal for patients with Lynch syndrome.

Aggarwal R, Misra S, Guleria C, et al.
Characterization of Toll-like receptor transcriptome in squamous cell carcinoma of cervix: A case-control study.
Gynecol Oncol. 2015; 138(2):358-62 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: Human papillomavirus (HPV) is a proven etiological agent for cervical cancer However, not all HPV infections result in cervical cancer. The mechanisms of host immune system to prevent/control HPV infection remain poorly understood. Toll-like receptors (TLRs) are a system of innate immune defense. HPV has been demonstrated to modulate TLR expression and interfere in TLR signaling pathways, leading to persistent viral infection and carcinogenesis. The aim was to study the relative gene expression of TLRs in cervical squamous cell carcinoma (SCC).
METHODS: Gene expression profile of TLRs 1 to 9 was examined in 30 cervical SCCs and an equal number of normal cervical tissue samples using a PCR array platform. Gene expression studies for TLRs 3 and 7 were validated by western blotting.
RESULTS: HPV was detected in all cases and in none of the controls (p<0.0001). HPV16 was the preponderant (83.3%) subtype. A significant downregulation in the relative gene expression of TLR3 (p<0.0001), TLR4 (p<0.0005) and TLR5 (p<0.0001) was observed in cases. A significant upregulation for TLR1 was observed (p=0.006). Although TLRs 2, 7, 8 and 9 were upregulated and TLR6 was downregulated, it was not significant. The western blot performed with antibodies against TLRs 3 and 7 confirmed the findings of the gene expression studies.
CONCLUSIONS: A significant downregulation in the gene expression of TLRs 3, 4 and 5 and upregulation of TLR1 was observed in cervical SCC as compared to controls. Study results evoke the proposition for investigating TLRs 3, 4 and 5 agonists for therapeutic exploration.

Disis ML, Stanton SE
Triple-negative breast cancer: immune modulation as the new treatment paradigm.
Am Soc Clin Oncol Educ Book. 2015; :e25-30 [PubMed] Related Publications
Recent studies of tumor lymphocytic immune infiltrates in breast cancer have suggested an improved prognosis associated with increasing levels of tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL). Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) is the breast cancer subtype that has the greatest incidence of patients with a robust tumor immune infiltrate, although it is still a minority of patients. Elevated levels of either intratumoral or stromal T cells are associated with an improved overall survival (OS) and disease-free survival (DFS) in TNBC as compared with other breast cancer subtypes. TNBC may be immunogenic for several reasons. Subtypes of TNBC have a significant number of genetic mutations, and the immune system may see the aberrant proteins encoded by these mutations as foreign. Moreover, TNBC is associated with a prognostic gene signature that also includes B cells. Antibodies secreted by B cells may bind to tumor antigens and amplify the adaptive immune response that has already been initiated in the tumor. New immune modulatory agents, including immune checkpoint inhibitors, have shown activity in immunogenic tumors such as melanoma and bladder cancer and have recently been tested in TNBC. The clinical response rates observed, patterns of response, and adverse event profiles are similar to what has been described in melanoma where this class of agents has already been approved for clinical use in some cases. Lessons learned in assessing the immunogenicity of TNBC, potential mechanisms of immune stimulation, and response to immune modulatory drugs lay the foundation for the development of immune-based therapies in all subtypes of the disease.

Webb JR, Milne K, Nelson BH
PD-1 and CD103 Are Widely Coexpressed on Prognostically Favorable Intraepithelial CD8 T Cells in Human Ovarian Cancer.
Cancer Immunol Res. 2015; 3(8):926-35 [PubMed] Related Publications
αE(CD103)β7 is a TGFβ-regulated integrin that mediates retention of lymphocytes in peripheral tissues by binding to E-cadherin expressed on epithelial cells. We recently reported that αE(CD103)β7 specifically demarcates intraepithelial CD8(+) tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (CD8 TIL) in ovarian cancer and that CD103(+) TIL have a surface profile consistent with an active effector phenotype (HLA-DR(+), Ki67(+), and CD127(lo)). These findings led us to hypothesize that, over time, CD103-mediated retention of CD8 TIL within the tumor epithelium might result in chronic stimulation by tumor antigen, which in turn might lead to an exhausted phenotype. To investigate this possibility, we evaluated PD-1 expression in a large cohort of ovarian tumors (N = 489) with known CD103(+) TIL content. PD-1(+) cells were present in 38.5% of high-grade serous carcinomas (HGSC), but were less prevalent in other histologic subtypes. PD-1(+) TIL were strongly associated with increased disease-specific survival in HGSC (HR, 0.4864; P = 0.0007). Multicolor immunohistochemistry and flow cytometry revealed a high degree of PD-1 and CD103 coexpression, specifically within the CD8 TIL compartment. PD-1(+)CD103(+) CD8 TIL were quiescent when assessed directly ex vivo yet were capable of robust cytokine production after pharmacologic stimulation. Moreover, they showed negligible expression of additional exhaustion-associated markers, including TIM-3, CTLA-4, and LAG-3. Thus, as hypothesized, CD103(+) CD8 TIL express PD-1 and appear quiescent in the tumor microenvironment. However, these cells retain functional competence and demonstrate strong prognostic significance. We speculate that, after standard treatment, PD-1(+)CD103(+) CD8 TIL might regain functional antitumor activity, an effect that potentially could be augmented by immune modulation.

Beane JD, Lee G, Zheng Z, et al.
Clinical Scale Zinc Finger Nuclease-mediated Gene Editing of PD-1 in Tumor Infiltrating Lymphocytes for the Treatment of Metastatic Melanoma.
Mol Ther. 2015; 23(8):1380-90 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
Programmed cell death-1 (PD-1) is expressed on activated T cells and represents an attractive target for gene-editing of tumor targeted T cells prior to adoptive cell transfer (ACT). We used zinc finger nucleases (ZFNs) directed against the gene encoding human PD-1 (PDCD-1) to gene-edit melanoma tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL). We show that our clinical scale TIL production process yielded efficient modification of the PD-1 gene locus, with an average modification frequency of 74.8% (n = 3, range 69.9-84.1%) of the alleles in a bulk TIL population, which resulted in a 76% reduction in PD-1 surface-expression. Forty to 48% of PD-1 gene-edited cells had biallelic PD-1 modification. Importantly, the PD-1 gene-edited TIL product showed improved in vitro effector function and a significantly increased polyfunctional cytokine profile (TNFα, GM-CSF, and IFNγ) compared to unmodified TIL in two of the three donors tested. In addition, all donor cells displayed an effector memory phenotype and expanded approximately 500-2,000-fold in vitro. Thus, further study to determine the efficiency and safety of adoptive cell transfer using PD-1 gene-edited TIL for the treatment of metastatic melanoma is warranted.

Santoiemma PP, Powell DJ
Tumor infiltrating lymphocytes in ovarian cancer.
Cancer Biol Ther. 2015; 16(6):807-20 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
The accumulation of tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) in ovarian cancer is prognostic for increased survival while increases in immunosuppressive regulatory T-cells (Tregs) are associated with poor outcomes. Approaches that bolster tumor-reactive TILs may limit tumor progression. However, identifying tumor-reactive TILs in ovarian cancer has been challenging, though adoptive TIL therapy in patients has been encouraging. Other forms of TIL immunomodulation remain under investigation including Treg depletion, antibody-based checkpoint modification, activation and amplification using dendritic cells, antigen presenting cells or IL-2 cytokine culture, adjuvant cytokine injections, and gene-engineered T-cells. Many approaches to TIL manipulation inhibit ovarian cancer progression in preclinical or clinical studies as monotherapy. Here, we review the impact of TILs in ovarian cancer and attempts to mobilize TILs to halt tumor progression. We conclude that effective TIL therapy for ovarian cancer is at the brink of translation and optimal TIL activity may require combined methodologies to deliver clinically-relevant treatment.

Jin C, Liu Y, Zhu J, et al.
Recombinant Salmonella-based CEACAM6 and 4-1BBL vaccine enhances T-cell immunity and inhibits the development of colorectal cancer in rats: In vivo effects of vaccine containing 4-1BBL and CEACAM6.
Oncol Rep. 2015; 33(6):2837-44 [PubMed] Related Publications
The present study aimed to determine the effect of recombinant Salmonella (SL3261)-based CEACAM6 and 4-1BB ligand (4-1BBL) vaccine on the development of colorectal cancer in rats and the potential immune mechanisms involved. Attenuated Salmonella typhimurium (vaccine strain)‑carrying plasmids pIRES-CEACAM6, pIRES‑4‑1BBL and pIRES-CEACAM6-4-1BBL were constructed. The rats were administered subcutaneous injections of 1,2-dimethyl-hydrazine (DMH) once a week for 18 weeks. Eight weeks after the first injection, the rats were divided into the pIRES/SL3261, pIRES-4-1BBL/SL3261, pIRES-CEACAM6/SL3261 and pIRES-CEACAM6-4-1BBL/SL3261 groups, and fed with corresponding vaccine strains. The rats were then sacrificed, the number of colon tumors were recorded, and the Dukes' stage were evaluated. CD3, CD4, CD8, CD56, FOXP3 and CEACAM6 expression in tumor tissues was determined by immunohistochemical staining. Compared with the expression levels in the pIRES/SL3261 group, similar levels of CD3+, CD8+ and CD56+ expression were identified for the pIRES-CEACAM6/SL3261 group of rats. Additionally, a comparable number of tumors was detected in the pIRES-4-1BBL/SL3261 and pIRES-CEACAM6/SL3261 groups. By contrast, a significantly fewer number of tumors, albeit with a higher density of CD3+CD8+, CD56+ and a lower density of Foxp3+ tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte (TIL) cells was detected in the pIRES-CEACAM6-4-1BBL/SL3261 group of rats. The results indicated that vaccination with recombinant attenuated Salmonella harboring the CEACAM6 and 4-1BBL gene efficiently increased the number of CD3+CD8+ TIL and NK cells, decreased the number of FOXP3 cells and inhibited the development of DMH-induced colorectal cancer in rats.

Djenidi F, Adam J, Goubar A, et al.
CD8+CD103+ tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes are tumor-specific tissue-resident memory T cells and a prognostic factor for survival in lung cancer patients.
J Immunol. 2015; 194(7):3475-86 [PubMed] Related Publications
We had previously demonstrated the role of CD103 integrin on lung tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte (TIL) clones in promoting specific TCR-mediated epithelial tumor cell cytotoxicity. However, the contribution of CD103 on intratumoral T cell distribution and functions and the prognosis significance of TIL subpopulations in non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC) have thus far not been systematically addressed. In this study, we show that an enhanced CD103(+) TIL subset correlates with improved early stage NSCLC patient survival and increased intraepithelial lymphocyte infiltration. Moreover, our results indicate that CD8(+)CD103(+) TIL, freshly isolated from NSCLC specimens, display transcriptomic and phenotypic signatures characteristic of tissue-resident memory T cells and frequently express PD-1 and Tim-3 checkpoint receptors. This TIL subset also displays increased activation-induced cell death and mediates specific cytolytic activity toward autologous tumor cells upon blockade of the PD-1-PD-L1 interaction. These findings emphasize the role of CD8(+)CD103(+) tissue-resident memory T cells in promoting intratumoral CTL responses and support the rationale for using anti-PD-1 blocking Ab to reverse tumor-induced T cell exhaustion in NSCLC patients.

Tang FB, Li ZX, Wang YM, et al.
Toll-like receptor 1 and 10 polymorphisms, Helicobacter pylori susceptibility and risk of gastric lesions in a high-risk Chinese population.
Infect Genet Evol. 2015; 31:263-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Genetic polymorphisms of Toll-like receptor (TLR) 1 and 10 may influence Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) susceptibility. To evaluate associations between TLR1 and 10 polymorphisms, H. pylori infection, and precancerous gastric lesions, a population-based study was conducted in a high-risk Chinese population. Three single-nucleotide polymorphisms, TLR1 rs4833095, TLR10 rs10004195, and TLR10 rs4129009 were genotyped by TaqMan SNP genotyping assay in 2553 participants with diverse gastric lesions. The status of H. pylori infection was determined by (13)C-urea breath test. TLR1 rs4833095 T and TLR10 rs10004195 T alleles were the minor alleles and showed in linkage disequilibrium (D'=0.98, r(2)=0.73) in the Chinese population. A decreased risk of H. pylori infection was observed in subjects with TLR1 rs4833095 CT genotype [adjusted odds ratio (OR)=0.80; 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.66-0.96] or T allele (OR=0.82; 95%CI: 0.69-0.99). Moreover, subjects carrying TLR1 rs4833095 TT genotype were associated with reduced risks of chronic atrophic gastritis (CAG, OR=0.66; 95%CI: 0.45-0.97) and intestinal metaplasia (IM, OR=0.57; 95%CI: 0.36-0.90). The risk of CAG was also decreased in subjects carrying TLR10 rs10004195 T allele (OR=0.75; 95%CI: 0.57-0.99). Furthermore, haplotype analysis indicated that haplotype TT of rs4833095 and rs10004195 had a protective effect on H. pylori infection (OR=0.83; 95%CI: 0.72-0.96) or precancerous gastric lesions (OR=0.78; 95%CI: 0.64-0.96 for CAG, and OR=0.74; 95%CI: 0.57-0.96 for IM). These findings suggest that TLR1 rs4833095 and TLR10 rs10004195 may play crucial roles in H. pylori susceptibility and gastric pathogenesis.

Zhang CY, Qi Y, Li XN, et al.
The role of CCL20/CCR6 axis in recruiting Treg cells to tumor sites of NSCLC patients.
Biomed Pharmacother. 2015; 69:242-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
Inflammatory chemokine CCL20 and its receptor CCR6 have been reported to correlate with colorectal cancer patients' metastasis. However, the role of CCL20 in patients with NSCLC is not well defined. In this study, we detected the expression of CCL20 in tumor samples and corresponding adjacent ones (n=71) from patients with NSCLC using RT-PCR and observed that CCL20 showed higher expression in tumor samples (0.28±0.17) than in adjacent ones (0.20±0.13) (n=71, P=0.0056), which was also verified in protein level using IHC. Analysis results showed that CCL20 expression was positively associated with CD4 (n=80, P=0.0046), Foxp3 (n=80, P=0.0020) and IL-10 (n=61, P=0.0003) in tumor samples. And the flow data showed that Treg cells accumulated in TIL (MFI: 961±760) compared with PBMC (MFI: 683±460) (n=40, P=0.0046); and the percentage of CCR6 - the sole receptor of CCL20 - on Treg cells was higher in TIL (MFI: 1311±1268) than in PBMC (MFI: 976±780) (n=40, P=0.0219). It was interesting to find that the expression of CCL20 in tumor sites was almost 1.5-fold higher in samples from high-stage patients (III-IV stage, 0.34±0.17) compared with those from low-stage patients (I-II stage, 0.22±0.11) (P=0.0056). Furthermore, the higher expression of CCL20 was associated with a lower overall survival (P=0.0198). The IHC data showed that tumor cells were the main source of CCL20, and after treated cell line A549 with docetaxel, we found that the secretion of CCL20 was decreased heavily (n=3, P=0.0046). Our results demonstrated that CCL20 cooperated with CCR6 could recruit Treg cells to tumor sites, and chemotherapy medicine docetaxel could decrease the expression of CCL20.

Kristian T, Ilkka L, Juuso J, et al.
T-cell subsets in peripheral blood and tumors of patients treated with oncolytic adenoviruses.
Mol Ther. 2015; 23(5):964-73 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
The quality of the antitumor immune response is decisive when developing new immunotherapies for cancer. Oncolytic adenoviruses cause a potent immunogenic stimulus and arming them with costimulatory molecules reshapes the immune response further. We evaluated peripheral blood T-cell subsets of 50 patients with refractory solid tumors undergoing treatment with oncolytic adenovirus. These data were compared to changes in antiviral and antitumor T cells, treatment efficacy, overall survival, and T-cell subsets in pre- and post-treatment tumor biopsies. Treatment caused a significant (P < 0.0001) shift in T-cell subsets in blood, characterized by a proportional increase of CD8(+) cells, and decrease of CD4(+) cells. Concomitant treatment with cyclophosphamide and temozolomide resulted in less CD4(+) decrease (P = 0.041) than cyclophosphamide only. Interestingly, we saw a correlation between T-cell changes in peripheral blood and the tumor site. This correlation was positive for CD8(+) and inverse for CD4(+) cells. These findings give insight to the interconnections between peripheral blood and tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte (TIL) populations regarding oncolytic virotherapy. In particular, our data suggest that induction of T-cell response is not sufficient for clinical response in the context of immunosuppressive tumors, and that peripheral blood T cells have a complicated and potentially misleading relationship with TILs.

Massink MP, Kooi IE, van Mil SE, et al.
Proper genomic profiling of (BRCA1-mutated) basal-like breast carcinomas requires prior removal of tumor infiltrating lymphocytes.
Mol Oncol. 2015; 9(4):877-88 [PubMed] Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: BRCA1-mutated breast carcinomas may have distinct biological features, suggesting the involvement of specific oncogenic pathways in tumor development. The identification of genomic aberrations characteristic for BRCA1-mutated breast carcinomas could lead to a better understanding of BRCA1-associated oncogenic events and could prove valuable in clinical testing for BRCA1-involvement in patients.
METHODS: For this purpose, genomic and gene expression profiles of basal-like BRCA1-mutated breast tumors (n = 27) were compared with basal-like familial BRCAX (non-BRCA1/2/CHEK2*1100delC) tumors (n = 14) in a familial cohort of 120 breast carcinomas.
RESULTS: Genome wide copy number profiles of the BRCA1-mutated breast carcinomas in our data appeared heterogeneous. Gene expression analyses identified varying amounts of tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) as a major cause for this heterogeneity. Indeed, selecting tumors with relative low amounts of TILs, resulted in the identification of three known but also five previously unrecognized BRCA1-associated copy number aberrations. Moreover, these aberrations occurred with high frequencies in the BRCA1-mutated tumor samples. Using these regions it was possible to discriminate BRCA1-mutated from BRCAX breast carcinomas, and they were validated in two independent cohorts. To further substantiate our findings, we used flow cytometry to isolate cancer cells from formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded, BRCA1-mutated triple negative breast carcinomas with estimated TIL percentages of 40% and higher. Genomic profiles of sorted and unsorted fractions were compared by shallow whole genome sequencing and confirm our findings.
CONCLUSION: This study shows that genomic profiling of in particular basal-like, and thus BRCA1-mutated, breast carcinomas is severely affected by the presence of high numbers of TILs. Previous reports on genomic profiling of BRCA1-mutated breast carcinomas have largely neglected this. Therefore, our findings have direct consequences on the interpretation of published genomic data. Also, these findings could prove valuable in light of currently used genomic tools for assessing BRCA1-involvement in breast cancer patients and pathogenicity assessment of BRCA1 variants of unknown significance. The BRCA1-associated genomic aberrations identified in this study provide possible leads to a better understanding of BRCA1-associated oncogenesis.

Maker AV, Ito H, Mo Q, et al.
Genetic evidence that intratumoral T-cell proliferation and activation are associated with recurrence and survival in patients with resected colorectal liver metastases.
Cancer Immunol Res. 2015; 3(4):380-8 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
Though immune responses correlate with prognosis in primary colorectal cancer, the role of tumor immunity in metastatic disease is less clear. We hypothesized that patient survival and tumor recurrence correlate with transcriptional evidence of lymphocyte proliferation/activation in resected colorectal cancer liver metastases (CRLM). Microarray gene analysis was performed on liver tumor specimens from 96 patients who underwent resection for CRLM. A Cox proportional hazards model identified genes associated with overall survival (OS) and recurrence-free survival (RFS). Conventional gene ontology (GO) enrichment analysis ranked biologically relevant processes. Survival probabilities of prioritized processes were assessed. Protein expression was validated with immunohistochemistry in an independent set of patients. GO analysis identified and ranked unique biologic processes that correlated with survival. Genes that specifically functioned in the biologic process of "T-cell proliferation" were significant predictors of OS (P = 0.01), and both "T-cell proliferation" and "activation" were highly associated with RFS (P ≤ 0.01). Analysis of genes in these GO categories identified increased TNFSF14/LIGHT expression to be most associated with improved OS and RFS (P ≤ 0.0006). Immunohistochemistry of an independent validation set of CRLM confirmed that both increased tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL) and higher LIGHT expression on TILs were associated with improved OS and RFS. Differential expression of genes involved in T-cell proliferation/activation was associated with survival outcomes in a large number of surgical patients who underwent resection of CRLM. These biologic functions determined by GO analysis of the tumor microenvironment have identified specific immune-related genes that may be involved in an antitumor immune response.

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