Presentation_1_NGS Evaluation of Colorectal Cancer Reveals Interferon Gamma Dependent Expression of Immune Checkpoint Genes and Identification of Novel IFNγ Induced Genes.pptx

To evaluate the expression of immune checkpoint genes, their concordance with expression of IFNγ, and to identify potential novel ICP related genes (ICPRG) in colorectal cancer (CRC), the biological connectivity of six well documented (“classical”) ICPs (CTLA4, PD1, PDL1, Tim3, IDO1, and LAG3) with IFNγ and its co-expressed genes was examined by NGS in 79 CRC/healthy colon tissue pairs. Identification of novel IFNγ- induced molecules with potential ICP activity was also sought. In our study, the six classical ICPs were statistically upregulated and correlated with IFNγ, CD8A, CD8B, CD4, and 180 additional immunologically related genes in IFNγ positive (FPKM > 1) tumors. By ICP co-expression analysis, we also identified three IFNγ-induced genes [(IFNγ-inducible lysosomal thiol reductase (IFI30), guanylate binding protein1 (GBP1), and guanylate binding protein 4 (GBP4)] as potential novel ICPRGs. These three genes were upregulated in tumor compared to normal tissues in IFNγ positive tumors, co-expressed with CD8A and had relatively high abundance (average FPKM = 362, 51, and 25, respectively), compared to the abundance of the 5 well-defined ICPs (Tim3, LAG3, PDL1, CTLA4, PD1; average FPKM = 10, 9, 6, 6, and 2, respectively), although IDO1 is expressed at comparably high levels (FPKM = 39). We extended our evaluation by querying the TCGA database which revealed the commonality of IFNγ dependent expression of the three potential ICPRGs in 638 CRCs, 103 skin cutaneous melanomas (SKCM), 1105 breast cancers (BC), 184 esophageal cancers (ESC), 416 stomach cancers (STC), and 501 lung squamous carcinomas (LUSC). In terms of prognosis, based on Pathology Atlas data, correlation of GBP1 and GBP4, but not IFI30, with 5-year survival rate was favorable in CRC, BC, SKCM, and STC. Thus, further studies defining the role of IFI30, GBP1, and GBP4 in CRC are warranted.