A novel prognostic immunoscore based on The Cancer Genome Atlas to predict overall survival in colorectal cancer patients

Biosci Rep. 2021 Oct 29;41(10):BSR20210039. doi: 10.1042/BSR20210039.


Colorectal cancer (CRC) is highly prevalent worldwide. The relationship between the infiltration of immunocytes in CRC and clinical outcome has been investigated in recent years. The present study aims to construct a new prognostic signature using an immunocyte panel. Our novel prognostic immunoscore included 13 types of immunocytes, which were identified by least absolute shrinkage and selection operator (LASSO)-Cox regression. The time-dependent receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve and Kaplan-Meier survival estimates were applied to evaluate the prognostic ability. Compared with the signature based on a single immune marker (i.e., CD8 mRNA expression and CD8+ expressing T cells), the novel prognostic immunoscore possessed better specificity and sensitivity of prognosis (area under the curves (AUCs) are 0.852, 0.856, and 0.774 for 1-, 2-, and 3-year survival times, respectively). Significant differences were identified between the high and low immunoscore groups in overall survival and disease-free survival in training and validation cohorts. Combining the immunoscore with clinical information may provide a more accurate prognosis for CRC. The immunoscore can identify patients with poor outcomes in the high Tumor Mutational Burden (TMB) group, who may benefit the most from immunotherapy. The immunoscore was also closely related to two immune checkpoints (i.e., PD-L1 and PD-1, r = 0.3087 and r = 0.3341, respectively). Collectively, our study demonstrates that the novel prognostic immunoscore reported here may be useful in distinguishing different prognoses and may improve the clinical management of patients with CRC.

Keywords: Overall survival; Prognostic immunoscore; The Cancer Genome Atlas; colorectal cancer.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't