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posted on 08.02.2022, 04:19 by Cheng-Long Han, Guang-Xiao Meng, Zi-Niu Ding, Zhao-Ru Dong, Zhi-Qiang Chen, Jian-Guo Hong, Lun-Jie Yan, Hui Liu, Bao-Wen Tian, Long-Shan Yang, Jun-Shuai Xue, Tao Li
Background

The relationship between baseline C-reactive protein (CRP) level and the prognosis of cancer patients receiving immune checkpoint inhibitor (ICI) treatment remains controversial. The aim of this meta-analysis was to clarify whether baseline CRP level can serve as a biomarker to predict the efficiency of ICI therapy.

Methods

All associated articles published in the Cochrane Library, EMBASE, and PubMed databases from the inception of the database to December 30, 2021, were retrieved. Progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) outcomes were meta-analyzed using the random-effects model and adjusted using the trim-and-fill method because of publication bias.

Results

Thirty-three studies (6,124 patients) conducted between 2013 and 2021 were identified. The pooled outcomes implied that high baseline CRP level patients had significantly worse OS (adjusted pooled value for univariate and multivariate analysis outcomes: HR = 1.48, 95% CI = 1.41–1.56; HR = 1.46, 95% CI = 1.34–1.59) and PFS (adjusted pooled value for univariate and multivariate analysis outcomes: HR = 1.29, 95% CI = 1.15–1.45; HR = 1.20, 95% CI = 1.02–1.40) than low baseline CRP level patients, irrespective of cancer or ICI type. Further analysis indicated that 1 mg/dl was appropriate as a cutoff value for determining the low or high level of baseline CRP to predict the OS or PFS of cancer patients receiving ICI treatment (univariate analysis: HR = 1.56, 95% CI = 1.24–1.97, P = 0.909; multivariate analysis: HR = 1.58, 95% CI = 1.23–2.03, P = 0.521).

Conclusions

High baseline CRP level (>1 mg/dl) may be an indicator for worse OS and PFS of cancer patients treated with ICIs. More high-quality prospective studies are warranted to assess the predictive value of CRP for ICI treatment.

History

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