Background: Colon cancer is a common and highly malignant cancer. Its morbidity is rapidly increasing, and its prognosis is poor. Currently, immunotherapy is a rapidly developing therapeutic modality of colon cancer. This study aimed to construct a prognostic risk model based on immune genes for the early diagnosis and accurate prognostic prediction of colon cancer.
Methods: Transcriptomic data and clinical data were downloaded from The Cancer Genome Atlas database. Immune genes were obtained from the ImmPort database. Differentially expressed (DE) immune genes between 473 colon cancer and 41 adjacent normal tissues were identified. The entire cohort was randomly divided into the training and testing cohort. The training cohort was used to construct the prognostic model. The testing and entire cohorts were used to validate the model. The clinical utility of the model and its correlation with immune cell infiltration were analyzed.
Results: A total of 333 DE immune genes (176 up-regulated and 157 down-regulated) were detected. We developed and validated a five-immune gene model of colon cancer, including LBP, TFR2, UCN, UTS2, and MC1R. This model was approved to be an independent prognostic variable, which was more accurate than age and the pathological stage for predicting overall survival at five years. Besides, as the risk score increased, the content of CD8+ T cells in colon cancer was decreased.
Conclusions: We developed and validated a five-immune gene model of colon cancer, including LBP, TFR2, UCN, UTS2, and MC1R. This model could be used as an instrumental variable in the prognosis prediction of colon cancer.
Keywords: Colon cancer; Immune gene; Prognosis; Risk model; TCGA.