The Association between Early Changes in Neutrophil-Lymphocyte Ratio and Survival in Patients Treated with Immunotherapy


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GÜVEN D. C., ŞAHİN T. K., Erul E., ÇAKIR İ. Y., ÜÇGÜL E., YILDIRIM H. Ç., ...More

JOURNAL OF CLINICAL MEDICINE, vol.11, no.15, 2022 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 11 Issue: 15
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.3390/jcm11154523
  • Journal Name: JOURNAL OF CLINICAL MEDICINE
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, EMBASE, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Keywords: biomarker, cancer, Charlson Comorbidity Index, immunotherapy, neutrophil-lymphocyte ratio, NLR2-CEL, IMMUNE-CHECKPOINT INHIBITOR, LACTATE-DEHYDROGENASE LDH, MELANOMA PATIENTS, PROGNOSTIC SCORE, PHASE-I, THERAPY, PEMBROLIZUMAB, CHEMOTHERAPY, NIVOLUMAB, BIOMARKER
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes

Abstract

Dynamic changes in the blood-based biomarkers could be used as a prognostic biomarker in patients treated with immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs), although the data are limited. We evaluated the association between the neutrophil-lymphocyte ratio (NLR) and early NLR changes with survival in ICI-treated patients. We retrospectively evaluated the data of 231 patients with advanced-stage cancer. We recorded baseline clinical characteristics, baseline NLR and fourth-week NLR changes, and survival data. A compound prognostic score, the NLR2-CEL score, was developed with the following parameters: baseline NLR (<5 vs. >= 5), ECOG status (0 vs. >= 1), Charlson Comorbidity Index (CCI, <9 vs. >= 9), LDH (N vs. >= ULN), and fourth-week NLR change (10% or over NLR increase). In the multivariable analyses, higher NLR (HR: 1.743, p = 0.002), 10% or over NLR increase in the fourth week of treatment (HR: 1.807, p = 0.001), higher ECOG performance score (HR: 1.552, p = 0.006), higher LDH levels (HR: 1.454, p = 0.017), and higher CCI (HR: 1.400, p = 0.041) were associated with decreased OS. Compared to patients with the lowest scores, patients in the highest score group had significantly lower OS (HR: 7.967, 95% CI: 3.531-17.979, p < 0.001) and PFS. The composite score had moderate success for survival prediction, with an AUC of 0.702 (95% CI: 0.626-0.779, p < 0.001). We observed significantly lower survival in patients with higher baseline NLR values and increased NLR values under treatment.