Tissue-infiltrating immune cells as prognostic markers in oral squamous cell carcinoma: a systematic review and meta-analysis
Methods - We performed a systematic literature search and included studies using immunohistochemistry and survival analysis to assess the prognostic value of tumour-infiltrating T cells, B cells, macrophages, dendritic cells, mast cells and natural killer cells in oral cancer. We performed meta-analysis of studies providing necessary statistical data and investigated the studies’ adherence to the REporting recommendations for tumour MARKer prognostic studies (REMARK) guidelines.
Results - Of the 1960 articles identified, 33 were eligible for this systematic review and 8 were included in the meta-analysis. CD163+ M2 macrophages and CD57+ natural killer cells were the most promising predictors of survival in oral cancer patients. Many studies lacked important information on their design and conduct.
Conclusion - Deficiencies in the reporting of study design and conduct make it difficult to draw reliable conclusions about the suggested markers. The prognostic value of CD163+ M2 macrophages and CD57+ natural killer cells should be validated in large, standardised studies.