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Journal of Immunology Research
Volume 2016, Article ID 9839685, 12 pages
Research Article

Evaluation of PD-L1 Expression in Tumor Tissue of Patients with Lung Carcinoma and Correlation with Clinical and Demographic Data

1Department of Medical Oncology, Barretos Cancer Hospital, Barretos, SP, Brazil
2Department of Oncology, Marcio Cunha Hospital, Fundação São Francisco Xavier, Ipatinga, MG, Brazil
3Post Graduation Program in Oncology, Barretos Cancer Hospital, Barretos, SP, Brazil
4Pathology, Clinicas Oncologicas Integradas, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil
5Barretos School of Health Sciences (FACISB), Barretos, SP, Brazil

Received 13 April 2016; Revised 20 July 2016; Accepted 18 August 2016

Academic Editor: Mario Clerici

Copyright © 2016 Gustavo Dix Junqueira Pinto et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Lung cancer is the leading world cause of cancer-related death, in both genders, and smoking is the main etiological factor. The discovery of immune checkpoints corroborates the hypothesis that ligands presented in tumors modulate the mechanisms of carcinogenesis and the immune activity of tumor microenvironment. Among the most studied coregulatory molecules, PD-1 (programmed cell death 1) and its ligand PD-L1 (programmed cell death 1 ligand 1) are noteworthy. The present study aims to enhance the understanding of the tumor microenvironment of lung cancer patients who underwent surgery, by means of analysis of PD-L1 expression in tumor cells and in intratumoral immune cells (IICs). It was found that PD-L1 expression was more frequent in tumor cells than in IICs. Collective analysis by Tissue Microarray Assay (TMA) for PD-L1 expression in tumor cells and IICs did not reproduce the findings for separate individual analysis of tumor tissues. Patients with past history of smoking were more likely to express PD-L1 in tumor cells than those who never smoked. Patients with past history of smoking were less likely to have PD-L1 positive IICs compared to those who had never smoked. The immunohistochemical expression of PD-L1 in tumor cells and IICs did not correlate with survival.