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27-02-2018 | Testicular cancer | Article

Systemic inflammatory markers have independent prognostic value in patients with metastatic testicular germ cell tumours undergoing first-line chemotherapy

Christian Daniel Fankhauser, Sophia Sander, Lisa Roth, Oliver Gross, Daniel Eberli, Tullio Sulser, Burkhardt Seifert, Joerg Beyer, Thomas Hermanns



The prognostic utility of systemic inflammatory markers has so far not been investigated in patients with metastatic testicular germ cell tumours (GCTs).


International Germ Cell Cancer Cooperative Group (IGCCCG) risk groups and blood-based systemic inflammatory markers (haemoglobin, leukocytes, platelets (P), neutrophils (N), lymphocytes (L), C-reactive protein (CRP) and albumin) of 146 patients undergoing first-line chemotherapy for GCT were retrieved. In addition, N to L ratio (NLR), P to L ratio and the systemic immune-inflammation index (SII=N × P/L) were calculated. The prognostic ability of these markers for overall survival (OS) were assessed using regression analyses and Kaplan–Meier curves with log-rank tests.


In univariate Cox regression, low haemoglobin and albumin as well as high leukocytes, N, NLR, SII and CRP were associated with a shorter OS. In multivariable Cox regression analyses, high leukocyte (hazard ratio (HR) 1.274 (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.057–1.535); P=0.011) and N count (1.470 (1.092–1.980); P=0.011), higher NLR (84.5 (2.2–3193.4); P=0.017) and SII (12.15 (1.17–126.26); P=0.037) remained independent prognostic predictors for OS besides the IGCCCG risk groups.


Systemic inflammatory markers might have prognostic utility for patients with metastatic GCT. The planned IGCCCG update could be an opportunity to test these markers in a larger data set.

Br J Cancer 2018; Advance online publication. doi: 10.1038/bjc.2017.467


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