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Albumin/globulin ratio is negatively correlated with PD-1 and CD25 mRNA levels in breast cancer patients

Authors Liu C, Wang W, Meng XY, Sun B, Cong Y, Liu JN, Wang Q, Liu GX, Wu SK

Received 10 December 2017

Accepted for publication 25 January 2018

Published 12 April 2018 Volume 2018:11 Pages 2131—2139


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Carlos E Vigil

Chao Liu,1,* Wei Wang,2,* Xiangying Meng,1 Bing Sun,1 Yang Cong,1 Jiannan Liu,1 Qian Wang,1 Guangxian Liu,2 Shikai Wu1

1Department of Radiation Oncology, Affiliated Hospital of Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Beijing, People’s Republic of China; 2Cancer Therapy Center, Affiliated Hospital of Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Beijing, People’s Republic of China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Background: Previous studies have demonstrated the prognostic value of globulin (GLB), albumin (ALB), the ALB/GLB ratio (AGR), body mass index (BMI), hemoglobin (Hb), and prognostic nutritional index (PNI) in breast cancer. The underlying mechanism has been investigated by examining the impact of nutritional parameters on T cells, natural killer cells, and dendritic cells, but little is known about their effect on checkpoint molecules.
Methods: Here, we investigated the correlation of mRNA expression of programmed cell death protein 1 (PD-1), cluster of differentiation 28 (CD28), cytotoxic T-lymphocyte antigen-4 (CTLA-4), and cluster of differentiation 25 (CD25) with AGR, ALB, GLB, total protein, pre-ALB, Hb, BMI, and PNI in the peripheral blood of breast cancer patients. One hundred and three patients and 21 age- and sex-matched healthy controls were enrolled. Quantitative real-time PCR was used to test relative mRNA expression.
Results: The results indicated that the mRNA levels of PD-1 and CD25 were 5.2- and 3.3-fold higher in patients with low AGR than in those with high AGR (P < 0.05). The mRNA levels of PD-1 were 3.5-fold higher in patients with high GLB than in those with low GLB (P < 0.05). In addition, breast cancer patients had higher expression levels of PD-1, CD28, CTLA-4, and CD25 mRNA in their peripheral blood compared with healthy volunteers (P < 0.05).
Conclusion: These results suggest that AGR is negatively correlated with PD-1 and CD25 mRNA levels, while GLB is positively associated with PD-1 mRNA levels. Nutritional status in breast cancer patients may influence the PD-1 pathway and have implications for the optimization of cancer therapy.

Keywords: nutrition, AGR, globulin, immune checkpoint, PD-1, CTLA-4, breast cancer

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