Zonal difference and prognostic significance of Foxp3 regulatory T cell infiltration in breast cancer

Sewha Kim, Anbok Lee, Woosung Lim, Sanghui Park, Min Sun Cho, Heasoo Koo, Byung In Moon, Sun Hee Sung

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: Forkhead box P3 (Foxp3) is known as the most specific marker for regulatory T lymphocytes, which play an important role in immune tolerance to disturb antitumor immunity. The present study aimed to investigate the prognostic significance of Foxp3 regulatory T lymphocyte (Foxp3 Treg) infiltration in breast cancer. Methods: Immunohistochemical studies with Foxp3, CD4, and CD8 were performed on representative full tissue sections from 143 patients with invasive ductile carcinoma, not otherwise specified. Foxp3 Treg infiltration and the ratios between Foxp3 Treg and CD4 or CD8 T cells were separately analyzed for the tumor bed and tumor periphery to evaluate their association with different clinicopathological parameters and patients' outcome. Results: The tumor periphery was considerably more densely infiltrated by Foxp3 Treg, CD4, and CD8 T cells than the tumor bed. Unfavorable clinicopathological parameters (a Ki-67 labeling in-dex of ≥ 14%, a worse histologic grade, a worse nuclear grade, hormone receptor negativity, human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 positivity, and tumor recurrence) were associated with increased Foxp3 Treg infiltration and a high ratio between Foxp3 Treg and CD4/CD8 T cells. In the tumor periphery, as Foxp3 Treg infiltration and the Foxp3 Treg/CD8 ratio increased, patients' 5-year disease-free survival rate decreased. Conclusion: The infiltration densities of Foxp3 Treg, CD4, and CD8 T cells were markedly different between the tumor bed and periphery. Besides the absolute count of Foxp3 Treg, the ratio between Foxp3 Treg and effectors T cells was a significant prognostic factor in breast cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8-17
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Breast Cancer
Volume17
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2014

Keywords

  • Breast neoplasms
  • Foxp3 protein
  • Humans
  • Regulatory
  • T-lymphocyte

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