J Cancer 2017; 8(19):4098-4105. doi:10.7150/jca.21030

Research Paper

Prognostic value of tumor-infiltrating Foxp3+ regulatory T cells in patients with breast cancer: a meta-analysis

Yu Zhou1*, Nan Shao1*, Nijiati Aierken1*, Chuanbo Xie2, Runyi Ye1, Xueke Qian1, Ziye Hu1, Jin Zhang1, Ying Lin1✉

1. Breast Disease Center, The First Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510080, P.R. China;
2. Department of Cancer Prevention Research, Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center, Guangzhou 510080, P.R. China.
* Contributed equally to this work

Abstract

Purpose: The prognostic value of tumor-infiltrating Foxp3+ regulatory T cells (Tregs) in breast cancer remains controversial. Therefore, we performed this meta-analysis to determine the impact of Foxp3+ Tregs infiltration on survival outcomes.

Methods: Relevant literature was retrieved from Pubmed, Web of science and Cocohrane until May 30, 2016. Meta-analysis was performed using hazard ratios (HRs), odds ratio (OR) and 95 % confidence intervals (CI) as effect measures.

Results: Fourteen studies (10,259 patients) were included. Meta-analysis showed that high Foxp3+ Tregs infiltration was correlated with high histological grade (OR= 2.96, 95%CI [2.03-4.31]), estrogen receptor (ER) negativity (OR= 0.38, 95%CI [0.23-0.60]), human epidermal growth factor receptor type 2 (HER2) positivity (OR=2.43, 95%CI [1.69-3.51]). The detection of FOXP3+ Tregs was significantly associated with recurrence-free survival (RFS) of patients (HR = 1.58, 95 % CI [1.03-2.44]).

Conclusion: Our meta-analysis suggests that high Foxp3+ Tregs infiltration is associated with poor RFS in breast cancer patients and predicts histological grade, estrogen receptor and HER-2 status.

Keywords: Foxp3, Regulatory T cells, Breast cancer, Prognosis, Meta-analysis.

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How to cite this article:
Zhou Y, Shao N, Aierken N, Xie C, Ye R, Qian X, Hu Z, Zhang J, Lin Y. Prognostic value of tumor-infiltrating Foxp3+ regulatory T cells in patients with breast cancer: a meta-analysis. J Cancer 2017; 8(19):4098-4105. doi:10.7150/jca.21030. Available from http://www.jcancer.org/v08p4098.htm