Intratumoral T but not B lymphocytes are related to clinical outcome in prostate cancer

APMIS. 2012 Nov;120(11):901-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0463.2012.02924.x. Epub 2012 Jul 4.


The number of tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes is functionally important and correlates with clinical outcome in several tumor entities. Herein we explore the impact of the density of T and B lymphocytes in prostate cancer tissue on prostate-specific antigen (PSA) recurrence after prostatectomy in 3261 prostate cancer tissue samples. The number of prostate cancer-infiltrating CD3-positive T cells and CD20-positive B cells per tissue spot in a tissue microarray format was determined by immunohistochemistry and was correlated with clinical and pathological data from the same patient cohort. Patients with very low and very high numbers of CD3-positive T cells per tissue spot had a significantly shorter PSA recurrence-free survival compared to patients with intermediate numbers of T cells (p = 0.0188). Furthermore, a high number of CD3-positive T cells per tissue spot was associated with fusion type prostate cancer identified by ERG expression analysis. The number of CD20-positive B cells per tissue spot was not associated with other clinical and histopathological parameters. This study indicates that the density of T but not B cells plays a functional role in the biology of prostate cancer and may have an impact on clinical outcome in this frequent neoplasia.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Antigens, CD20 / metabolism
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • CD3 Complex / metabolism
  • Cell Survival
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Lymphocyte Count
  • Male
  • Microarray Analysis
  • Middle Aged
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Prostate / pathology
  • Prostate / surgery
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen / blood
  • Prostatectomy
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / immunology*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / pathology
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / surgery
  • Regression Analysis
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Antigens, CD20
  • CD3 Complex
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen