Association between PD-L1 expression and driver gene status in non-small-cell lung cancer: a meta-analysis

Bo Lan, Chengxi Ma, Chengyan Zhang, Shoujie Chai, Pingli Wang, Liren Ding and Kai Wang _

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Oncotarget. 2018; 9:7684-7699. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.23969

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Bo Lan1,*, Chengxi Ma1,*, Chengyan Zhang1, Shoujie Chai2, Pingli Wang1, Liren Ding1 and Kai Wang1

1Department of Respiratory Medicine, Second Affiliated Hospital, Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou, China

2Department of Oncology, Ningbo First Hospital, Ningbo, China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Correspondence to:

Kai Wang, email: [email protected]

Liren Ding, email: [email protected]

Keywords: PD-L1; driver gene; NSCLC

Received: June 16, 2017     Accepted: December 29, 2017     Published: January 05, 2018


Objective: To assess the association between PD-L1 expression and driver gene mutations in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC).

Method: We performed a meta-analysis of 26 studies (7541 patients) which were published from 2015 to 2017. Pooled odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CI) were calculated to describe the correlation. Subgroup analysis was performed based on population characteristics, types of PD-L1 antibodies and quality of individual studies.

Results: A lower frequency of PD-L1 positivity was observed in NSCLCs harboring EGFR mutation (OR: 0.64, 95% CI, 0.45–0.91, p = 0.014). A negative correlation was also found at 1% (OR: 0.35, 95% CI, 0.22–0.55, p = 0.000) and 50% (OR: 0.33, 95% CI, 0.14–0.81, p = 0.015) cutoff for PD-L1 positive, elderly age group (OR: 0.56, 95% CI, 0.35–0.89, p = 0.013), female dominant group (OR: 0.55, 95% CI, 0.29–0.94, p = 0.030) and smoker dominant group (OR: 0.52, 95% CI, 0.29–0.96, p = 0.035). No significant differences in PD-L1 expression were observed among patients with different ALK, BRAF, HER2, PIK3CA status and MET expression level. Higher level of PD-L1 was found in tumors with KRAS mutation (OR: 1.45, 95% CI, 1.18–1.80, p = 0.001). PD-L1 expression level was not significantly different between triple (EGFR/ALK/KRAS) wild type NSCLCs and those with EGFR/ALK/KRAS mutation.

Conclusions: PD-L1 expression in EGFR mutated NSCLCs were lower than those in EGFR wild type NSCLCs, while tumors with KRAS mutation showed higher levels of PD-L1.

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