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01.12.2018 | Research article | Ausgabe 1/2018 Open Access

BMC Cancer 1/2018

Prognostic role of myeloid-derived suppressor cells in cancers: a systematic review and meta-analysis

BMC Cancer > Ausgabe 1/2018
Lisha Ai, Shidai Mu, Yadan Wang, Huafang Wang, Li Cai, Wenzhu Li, Yu Hu



Myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs) is a heterogeneous population of immature myeloid cells, inhibiting both the innate and adaptive immunity. Recent studies validated that MDSCs caused immune suppression and promoted cancer progression through various mechanisms. However, the prognostic value of MDSCs in cancer remains controversial.


Here, we performed this meta-analysis to evaluate the prognostic value of MDSCs in various types of cancer. The electric databases, such as Pubmed, Embase and Web of Science, were searched for relevant publications. Hazards ratios (HRs) with the corresponding 95% confidence intervals (95%CIs) were calculated to evaluate the prognostic role of MDSCs in cancer.


A total of 16 studies with 1864 patients were enrolled in our meta-analysis. Elevated MDSCs frequency was shown to be associated with shorter overall survival (OS) (HR = 2.46, 95%CI: 1.87–3.23), and poor disease-free survival / recurrence-free survival (DFS / RFS) (HR = 3.26, 95%CI: 2.10–5.04) after treatment. Furthermore, similar results were also observed in the stratified subgroup analysis, which included the analysis by region, sample size, cancer type, NOS scores, subtype and cut-off value of MDSCs.


High MDSCs might be related to poor clinical outcomes of patients with cancer, that is, MDSCs might be a potential prognostic biomarker in cancer.
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