A Transcriptional Signature of PDGF-DD Activated Natural Killer Cells Predicts More Favorable Prognosis in Low-Grade Glioma

Yuhan Sun, Alexander James Sedgwick*, Yaseelan Palarasah, Stefano Mangiola*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Abstract

The binding of platelet-derived growth factor D (PDGF-DD) to the NKp44 receptor activates a distinct transcriptional program in primary IL-2 expanded human natural killer (NK) cells. We were interested in knowing if the PDGF-DD-NKp44 pathway of NK cell activation might play a clinically relevant role in anti-tumor immunity. In order to address this question, we determined transcriptional signatures unique to resting, IL-2 expanded, and PDGF-DD activated, NK cells, in addition to different T cell subsets, and established the abundance of these immune cell phenotypes in The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) low-grade glioma (LGG) dataset using CIBERSORT. Our results show that LGG patient tumors enriched for either the PDGF-DD activated NK cell or memory CD8+ T cell phenotypes are associated with a more favorable prognosis. Combined cell phenotype analyses revealed that patients with LGG tumors enriched for the PDGF-DD activated NK cell phenotype and the CD4+ T helper cell phenotype had a more favorable prognosis. High expression of transcripts encoding members of the killer cell lectin-like receptor (KLR) family, such as KLRK1 and KLRC2, KLRC3 and KLRC4 in LGG tumors were associated with more favorable prognosis, suggesting that these NK cell family receptors may play a prominent role in LGG anti-tumor immunity. Finally, many of the TCGA findings were reciprocated in LGG patients from the Chinese Glioma Genome Atlas (CGGA) dataset. Our results provide transcriptomic evidence that PDGF-DD activated NK cells and KLR family receptors may play an important clinical role in immune surveillance of LGG.
Original languageEnglish
Article number668391
JournalFrontiers in Immunology
Volume12
Number of pages13
ISSN1664-3224
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2021

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