Association Between Smoking and Survival Benefit of Immunotherapy in Advanced Malignancies A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis


Smoking is associated with an increased tumor mutational burden. As tumor mutational burden has been shown to correlate with response to immunotherapy (IO), we hypothesized that a history of smoking may be associated with better response to IO.


We utilized a systematic review with stratified meta-analysis of randomized clinical trials of IO versus standard of care in patients with advanced solid organ malignancies.


Among 9 relevant studies, we found no significant difference in the benefit of IO, compared with other systemic therapies, between ever smokers (hazard ratio [HR], 0.77; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.58-1.04; P=0.09) and never smokers (HR, 0.75; 95% CI, 0.67-0.86; P<0.0001) (test for difference P=0.83). We also observed no significant difference between current (HR, 0.92; 95% CI, 0.63-1.34; P=0.66; I=67%) and never smokers (HR, 0.74; 95% CI, 0.59-0.93; P=0.01; I=46%) (test for difference P=0.35).


Stratified meta-analysis demonstrates that smoking status is not significantly associated with the response to IO in the treatment of advanced solid organ malignancies.