Objective: To investigate the predictive value of tumour-infiltrating immune cells (TIICs) on oncological outcomes and response to BCG treatment in patients with non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC). Materials and Methods: A systematic review and meta-analysis was performed using PubMed, Scopus and the Cochrane Library in July 2020 to identify relevant studies according to the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) statement. The pooled recurrence-free survival (RFS) rate was calculated using a fixed-effect model. Results: We retrieved 15 studies (including 791 patients) evaluating the effect of TIICs on oncological outcomes in patients with NMIBC treated with intravesical BCG. TIICs were reported to be a significant predictor of oncological outcomes and response to BCG treatment in 10 studies. Tumour-associated macrophages were associated with worse RFS (pooled hazard ratio 2.30, 95% confidence interval 1.64–3.22). Conclusions: Based on these data, TIICs are significant predictors of RFS and response to BCG treatment in patients with NMIBC; therefore, incorporation of TIICs into risk stratification models may help patients and physicians in the clinical decision-making process in order to achieve the maximum possible benefit from BCG treatment.
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