Positive tumour CD47 expression is an independent prognostic factor for recurrence in resected non-small cell lung cancer

Yan Xu, Ji Li, Bing Tong, Minjiang Chen, Xiaoyan Liu, Wei Zhong, Jing Zhao, Mengzhao Wang
ESMO Open 2020, 5 (4)

BACKGROUND: Immunotherapy is a promising advance in oncology. Limited information exists regarding the interrelationship between CD47 expression and tumour-associated macrophage-related immuno-microenvironment in patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). These factors may predict novel immunotherapy efficacy.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: CD47 and PD-L1 expression was retrospectively assessed in 191 resected NSCLC specimens via immunohistochemistry. Forty-six patients with pulmonary infectious diseases were enrolled as the control group. The infiltration of macrophages (M2 and M1) and CD8+ T-lymphocytes was evaluated via dual-immunofluorescence staining. Targeted DNA sequencing was performed on NSCLC specimens. Survival analysis was performed using the Cox model.

RESULTS: Using 2+/3+ as a CD47 positive (CD47pos ) expression cut-off, the prevalence of CD47pos expression in NSCLC was 33.0% (63/191), significantly higher than in pulmonary infectious diseases. CD47pos expression was significantly higher in female, non-smoking and adenocarcinoma patients (p=0.020, p<0.001 and p<0.001, respectively). Furthermore, CD47pos expression was significantly correlated with epidermal growth factor receptor mutation (p<0.001). The expression of CD47 (H-score) in NSCLC was negatively correlated with tumour PD-L1 expression (p=0.0346) and tumour mutation burden (p=0.0107). CD47pos expression was independently correlated with poor disease-free survival in patients with resected NSCLC in multivariate Cox regression analysis (p=0.035).

CONCLUSION: This study revealed the demographic, molecular and immuno-microenvironment characteristics of CD47 expression in NSCLC. We identified tumour CD47pos expression as an independent prognostic factor for recurrence in resected NSCLC. Our findings illustrate the potential of anti-CD47 treatment in NSCLC.

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