Clinical and molecular correlates of PD-L1 expression in patients with lung adenocarcinomas.

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Programmed death-ligand 1 (PD-L1) expression is the only FDA-approved biomarker for immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) in patients with lung adenocarcinoma, but sensitivity is modest. Understanding the impact of molecular phenotype, clinical characteristics, and tumor features on PD-L1 expression is largely unknown and may improve prediction of response to ICI.We evaluated patients with lung adenocarcinoma for whom PD-L1 testing and targeted next-generation sequencing (using MSK-IMPACT) was performed on the same tissue sample. Clinical and molecular features were compared across PD-L1 subgroups to examine how molecular phenotype associated with tumor PD-L1 expression. In patients treated with anti-PD-(L)1 blockade, we assessed how these interactions impacted efficacy.A total of 1586 patients with lung adenocarcinoma had paired PD-L1 testing and targeted next-generation sequencing. PD-L1 negativity was more common in primary compared to metastatic samples (P < 0.001). The distribution of PD-L1 expression (lymph nodes enriched for PD-L1 high; bones predominantly PD-L1 negative) and predictiveness of PD-L1 expression on ICI response varied by organ. Mutations in KRAS, TP53, and MET significantly associated with PD-L1 high expression (each P < 0.001, Q < 0.001) and EGFR and STK11 mutations associated with PD-L1 negativity (P < 0.001, Q = 0.01; P = 0.001, Q < 0.001, respectively). WNT pathway alterations also associated with PD-L1 negativity (P = 0.005). EGFR and STK11 mutants abrogated the predictive value of PD-L1 expression on ICI response.PD-L1 expression and association with ICI response vary across tissue sample sites. Specific molecular features are associated with differential expression of PD-L1 and may impact the predictive capacity of PD-L1 for response to ICIs.

Click here to read the full article @ Annals of oncology : official journal of the European Society for Medical Oncology
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