Background and purpose: A lower proportion of CD8+ tumor infiltrating lymphocytes in mycosis fungoides (MF) patients is associated with worse survival. However, it is not known whether circulating CD4:CD8 ratio is a prognosticator of response to total skin electron beam therapy (TSEBT). Methods and materials: We identified 126 MF patients treated with TSEBT from 2001 to 20014 at two high-volume academic centers. Circulating CD4:CD8 ratio was obtained within 1 week before TSEBT. TSEBT was delivered with 6-9mEV electrons with low (12 Gy) or conventional (≥12 Gy) doses. Treatment response was assessed with the modified Severity Weighted Assessment Tool (mSWAT). Post-treatment mSWAT decrease of ≥75% was classified as near complete response (CR) while mSWAT decrease of <75% was considered partial response (PR). Receiver operating characteristic analysis determined an optimal CD4:CD8 threshold value to predict TSEBT response in the derivation cohort and was applied to an external validation cohort. Results: 71.4% and 28.6% of patients achieved CR and PR after TSEBT. Higher CD4:CD8 ratio predicted poorer response: median CD4:CD8 in patients with PR vs. CR was 4.84 vs. 1.97 (p = 0.002). A threshold CD4:CD8 of 4.42 optimally discriminated in the discovery cohort patients with PR vs. XR (sensitivity 90%, specificity 59%, area under curve (AUC) = 0.71; p = 0.002). Within an independent test cohort (n = 32), 73.9% of patients with CD4:CD8 <4.42 achieved CR vs. 33.3% of those with CD4:CD8 ≥4.42 (p = 0.033). Among all patients with CD4:CD8 <4.42 (n = 73), 74% achieved CR with low-dose TSEBT vs. 93% with conventional dose TSEBT (p = 0.02). On multivariable logistic regression, CD4:CD8 remained a significant independent predictor of TSEBT response in all patients (OR = 0.107, 95% CI 0.395–0.290, p < 0.001). Conclusion: Peripheral blood CD4:CD8 ratio was a significant independent predictor of TSEBT response of MF patients as validated in an independent cohort at separate academic center. The potential for CD4:CD8 ratio as a biomarker to inform radiation treatment dosing warrants further investigation.
- Mycoses fungoides
- Total skin electron therapy
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging