The predictive accuracy of the traditional staging system is based on disease progression as a tumour cell-autonomous process, but it fails to incorporate the effects of the host immune response. A precise analysis of the immune component of the tumour microenvironment by computer-based analysis may be essential to managing patients better, opening the road to an expertise in this new emerging field. The Immunoscore as a new possible approach in the classification of cancer, designated TNM-Immune, studied in colon cancer patients with predictive and prognostic value. This new scoring system is derived from the immune contexture, and is based on the numeration of lymphocyte populations, both in the core of the tumour and in the invasive margin of tumours. The Immunoscore demonstrated to be quantitative, reproducible and robust. The usefulness of Immunoscore in advanced melanoma cancer patients has been as well demonstrated; the correlation of marker expression profile with clinical outcome is ongoing. More recently, the Immunoscore could be a useful prognostic marker in patients with rectal cancer treated by primary surgery. A multivariable Cumulative "Suppression Index" scoring system has been also studied in Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma patients: it evaluates both the tumor and stromal microcompartments at the invasive margin and summarizes them into the score, providing an accurate stratification, independent of stage, tumour classification. The introduction of Immunoscore requires a redefinition of the Laboratory system according to the LEAN Management process, which has been already implemented in referral research labs. The definition and test of hundreds of biomarkers, in the tumour contexture represents a definitive scientific progression. However, there is still a need of substantial body of work to reach the end of the tunnel to assure a personalize treatment.
- Journal Article