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Transcriptome of Tumor-Infiltrating T Cells in Colorectal Cancer Patients Uncovered a Unique Gene Signature in CD4+ T Cells Associated with Poor Disease-Specific Survival

journal contribution
submitted on 2024-05-07, 11:54 and posted on 2024-05-07, 11:54 authored by Salman M. Toor, Varun Sasidharan Nair, Reem Saleh, Rowaida Z. Taha, Khaled Murshed, Mahmood Al-Dhaheri, Mahwish Khawar, Ayman A. Ahmed, Mohamed A. Kurer, Mohamed Abu Nada, Eyad Elkord

Colorectal cancer (CRC) is influenced by infiltration of immune cell populations in the tumor microenvironment. While elevated levels of cytotoxic T cells are associated with improved prognosis, limited studies have reported associations between CD4+ T cells and disease outcomes. We recently performed transcriptomic profiling and comparative analyses of sorted CD4+ and CD8+ tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) from bulk tumors of CRC patients with varying disease stages. In this study, we compared the transcriptomes of CD4+ with CD8+ TILs. Functional annotation pathway analyses revealed the downregulation of inflammatory response-related genes, while T cell activation and angiogenesis-related genes were upregulated in CD4+ TILs. The top 200 deregulated genes in CD4+ TILs were aligned with the cancer genome atlas (TCGA) CRC dataset to identify a unique gene signature associated with poor prognosis. Moreover, 69 upregulated and 20 downregulated genes showed similar trends of up/downregulation in the TCGA dataset and were used to calculate “poor prognosis score” (ppScore), which was significantly associated with disease-specific survival. High ppScore patients showed lower expression of Treg-, Th1-, and Th17-related genes, and higher expression of Th2-related genes. Our data highlight the significance of T cells within the TME and identify a unique candidate prognostic gene signature for CD4+ TILs in CRC patients.

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Published in: Vaccines
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  • English



Publication Year

  • 2021

License statement

This Item is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Institution affiliated with

  • Hamad Bin Khalifa University
  • Qatar Biomedical Research Institute - HBKU
  • Cancer Research Center - QBRI
  • Hamad Medical Corporation

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