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Association of markers of systemic and local inflammation with prognosis of patients with rectal cancer who received neoadjuvant radiotherapy

Authors Zhang X, Li J, Peng Q, Huang Y, Tang L, Zhuang Q, Lin F, Lin X, Du K, Wu J

Received 14 September 2018

Accepted for publication 28 November 2018

Published 24 December 2018 Volume 2019:11 Pages 191—199


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Chien-Feng Li

Xueqing Zhang,1,* Jinluan Li,1,* Qingqin Peng,2 Yunxia Huang,1 Lirui Tang,1 Qingyang Zhuang,1
Feifei Lin,1 Xijin Lin,1 Kaixin Du,3 Junxin Wu1

1Department of Radiation Oncology, Fujian Medical University Cancer Hospital, Fujian Cancer Hospital, Fuzhou 350014, China; 2Department of Radiation Oncology, First Hospital of Quanzhou Affiliated to Fujian Medical University, Quanzhou 362000, China; 3Department of Radiation Oncology, Xiamen Humanity Hospital, Xiamen 361000, China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Purpose: The inflammatory status of patients with cancer appears to affect cancer progression and patient prognosis. We examined the characteristics of cancer-associated systemic and local inflammation and its impact on the overall survival (OS) of patients with locally advanced rectal cancer (LARC) who received neoadjuvant radiotherapy (nRT).
Patients and methods: Seventy-six consecutive LARC patients who received nRT from February 2012 to September 2015 were retrospectively analyzed. The peripheral neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio (NLR) was determined at diagnosis, and the CD8+ T-cell count was determined from surgical specimens. Factors associated with OS were identified by univariate and multivariate Cox regression.
Results: The median follow-up time was 23.0 months (range: 2–59), and the overall 5-year OS rate was 68.6% (95% CI =46.06–91.14). Patients with a high NLR (≥2.0) and a low CD8+ T-cell count (<9%) had a significantly worse 5-year OS than those with a low NLR and a high CD8+ T-cell count (P=0.005). NLR was also associated with lymphovascular invasion (P=0.014) and T stage (P=0.047), and the CD8+ T-cell count was associated with mucinous adenocarcinoma (P=0.005) and T stage (P=0.049). An NLR <2.0 was associated with pathological complete regression after nRT (P=0.039). Multivariate Cox regression indicated that NLR (P=0.025), CD8+ T-cell count (P=0.018), age (P=0.020), lymphovascular invasion (P=0.038), and T stage (P=0.011) were independently associated with OS.
Conclusion: A high NLR and a low CD8+ T-cell count were significantly associated with poor survival in our population of patients with LARC. Measurement of markers of systemic and local inflammation might help to predict the prognosis of patients with LARC after nRT.

Keywords: inflammation, NLR, CD8+ T-cell count, prognosis, rectal cancer, neoadjuvant radiotherapy

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