Oncotarget: Mutational Burden in Lung Cancer Studied in Multisite Cohort


In a trending new research paper published in Oncotarget, researchers conducted a multi-site cohort study of tumor mutational burden among hundreds of patients diagnosed with stage IV non-small cell lung cancer.


BUFFALO, NY-April 25, 2022 – A new research paper, entitled, “Real-world survival analysis by tumor mutational burden in non-small cell lung cancer: a multisite U.S. study,” was published in Oncotarget on January 31, 2022, by researchers from University of Utah, University of Minnesota Duluth, Huntsman Cancer Institute, H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Baptist Health Medical Group, MetroHealth Medical Center, Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, University of Southern California, Saint Luke’s Cancer Institute, University of Kentucky, and Bristol Myers Squibb.

This multidisciplinary research team analyzed tumor mutational burden (TMB) among a large cohort of patients who had been diagnosed with stage IV non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). The cohort included 667 patients recruited from nine different academic and community cancer centers across the United States. 

 “The purpose of this study is to evaluate clinical outcomes by TMB among NSCLC patients treated with immunotherapy containing regimens in the first-line setting.” (Source, 2022)

While having a high TMB may sound unfavorable, a higher TMB has been associated with a higher number of neoantigens. The presence of a greater number of neoantigens may potentiate a stronger immune response. Thus, TMB may be a viable biomarker of tumor response to immuno-oncology agents.

“Based on the results in this study and prior research, TMB along with other biomarkers, such as PD-L1, may help identify patients more likely to benefit from first-line immunotherapy.” (Source, 2022)

Results of the study confirmed the association between a higher TMB and smoking history. However, the study did not show an association between TMB and sex, age or tumor histology. The team found that, among patients treated with first-line immunotherapy, TMB levels greater than or equal to 10 mutations per megabase were significantly associated with improved overall survival and progression-free survival.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.28178

Corresponding author: Connor Willis - [email protected]

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About Oncotarget: Oncotarget (a primarily oncology-focused, peer-reviewed, open access journal) aims to maximize research impact through insightful peer-review; eliminate borders between specialties by linking different fields of oncology, cancer research and biomedical sciences; and foster application of basic and clinical science.

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