Currently, evaluating immunotherapy responders from non-responders requires flow cytometry to analyze tumor immune Infiltrate. However, flow cytometry requires cells from fresh tissue, only a single sample can be sorted at a time, and the sorting process is slow. NanoString has created a novel gene expression panel to separate check point inhibitor responders from non-responders. The PanCancer IO 360 Gene Expression Panel is a 770-gene expression panel that combines vital components involved in the complex interplay between the tumor, microenvironment and immune response in cancer allowing for a multifaceted characterization of disease biology and interrogation of mechanisms of immune evasion.
Importantly it, contains a unique 18-gene Tumor Inflammation Signature, published by Ayers et al. 2017, to identify responders to popular immunotherapy drugs, such as Keytruda. There are several advantages of this panel over flow cytometry: 1) fresh tissue is not required, 2) you can conduct analysis on 12 samples at a time, 3) the analysis is fast, and 4) you receive a Tumor Inflammation Signature (TIS) score report, giving you the degree of inflammatory response of your samples.
Ayers, Mark, et al. “IFN-y-related mRNA profile predicts clinical response to PD-1 blockade.” The Journal of Clinical Investigation 127.8 (2017).