Targeting programmed cell death ligand 1 by CRISPR/Cas9 in osteosarcoma cells.

PMID 28415820


Programmed cell death ligand 1 (PD-L1) is a transmembrane protein that is expressed on tumor cells that suppresses the T cell-mediated immune response. Therapies targeting the PD-L1 pathway promote anti-tumor immunity and have shown promising results in some types of cancers. However, the functional and therapeutic roles of PD-L1 in osteosarcoma remain largely unknown. In this study, we found that PD-L1 protein was expressed in osteosarcoma cell lines and tissue microarray of patient tumors. Tissue microarray immunohistochemistry analysis showed that the overall and five-year survival rates of patients with high levels of PD-L1 expression were significantly shorter than patients with low levels. High levels of PD-L1 expression were also associated with metastasis in osteosarcoma patients. Furthermore, we applied the Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR)/Cas9 system to target PD-L1 gene at the DNA level in osteosarcoma cell lines. We found that the expression of PD-L1 could be efficiently disrupted by CRISPR/Cas9 system and PD-L1 knockdown increased drug sensitivities for doxorubicin and paclitaxel. These results suggest that PD-L1 is an independent prognostic factor in osteosarcoma and that PD-L1 knockout by CRISPR/Cas9 may be a therapeutic approach for the treatment of osteosarcoma.