For a long time, the guidance for adjuvant chemoradiotherapy for lower grade glioma (LGG) lacks instructions on the application timing and order of radiotherapy (RT) and chemotherapy. We, therefore, aimed to develop indicators to distinguish between the different beneficiaries of RT and chemotherapy, which would provide more accurate guidance for combined chemoradiotherapy. By analysing 942 primary LGG samples from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) and the Chinese Glioma Genome Atlas (CGGA) databases, we trained and validated two gene signatures (Rscore and Cscore) that independently predicted the responsiveness to RT and chemotherapy (Rscore AUC = 0.84, Cscore AUC = 0.79) and performed better than a previous signature. When the two scores were combined, we divided patients into four groups with different prognosis after adjuvant chemoradiotherapy: RSCS (RT-sensitive and chemotherapy-sensitive), RSCR (RT-sensitive and chemotherapy-resistant), RRCS (RT-resistant and chemotherapy-sensitive) and RRCR (RT-resistant and chemotherapy-resistant). The order and dose of RT and chemotherapy can be adjusted more precisely based on this patient stratification. We further found that the RRCR group exhibited a microenvironment with significantly increased T cell inflammation. In silico analyses predicted that patients in the RRCR group would show a stronger response to checkpoint blockade immunotherapy than other patients.
© 2020 The Authors. Journal of Cellular and Molecular Medicine published by Foundation for Cellular and Molecular Medicine and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.