Maitane Ocáriz-Díez 1 , 2 , * , Mara Cruellas 1 , 2 , Marta Gascón 1 , 2 , Rodrigo Lastra 1 , 2 , Luis Martínez-Lostao 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , Ariel Ramírez-Labrada 7 , José Ramón Paño 2 , 8 , Andrea Sesma 1 , 2 , Irene Torres 1 , 2 , Alfonso Yubero 1 , 2 , Julián Pardo 2 , 9 , 10 , 11 , Dolores Isla 1 , 2 , Eva M. Gálvez 12
24 September 2020
The advances in molecular biology and the emergence of Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) have revealed that microbiome composition is closely related with health and disease, including cancer. This relationship affects different levels of cancer such as development, progression, and response to treatment including immunotherapy. The efficacy of immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) may be influenced by the concomitant use of antibiotics before, during or shortly after treatment with ICIs. Nevertheless, the linking mechanism between microbiote, host immunity and cancer is not clear and the role of microbiota manipulation and analyses in cancer management has not been clinically validated yet. Regarding the use of microbiome as biomarker to predict ICI efficacy it has been recently shown that the use of biochemical serum markers to monitor intestinal permeability and loss of barrier integrity, like citrulline, could be useful to monitor microbiota changes and predict ICI efficacy. There are still many unknowns about the role of these components, their relationship with the microbiota, with the use of antibiotics and the response to immunotherapy. The next challenge in microbiome research will be to identify individual microbial species that causally affect lung cancer phenotypes and response to ICI and disentangle the underlying mechanisms. Thus, further analyses in patients with lung cancer receiving treatment with ICIs and its correlation with the composition of the microbiota in different organs including the respiratory tract, peripheral blood and intestinal tract could be useful to predict the efficacy of ICIs and its modulation with antibiotic use.