Targeting immune suppressing myeloid-derived suppressor cells in oncology

Johnny Kao, Eric C. Ko, Samuel Eisenstein, Andrew G. Sikora, Shibo Fu, Shu hsia Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

111 Scopus citations

Abstract

Emerging data suggests that host immune cells with a suppressive phenotype represent a significant hurdle to successful therapy for metastatic cancer. Among the suppressor cells, T regulatory cells (Treg) and myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSC) are significantly increased in hosts with advanced malignancies. MDSC mediate the suppression of the tumor antigen-specific T cell response through the induction of T cell anergy and the development of Treg in tumor-bearing mice. These results provide robust evidence of an in vivo immunoregulatory function of MDSC in the establishment of tumor antigen-specific tolerance and the development of Treg in tumor-bearing hosts. To achieve effective anti-tumor immunity, tumor-induced immunosuppression must be reversed. Our preliminary results indicate that c-kit ligand (stem cell factor) expressed by tumor cells may be required for MDSC accumulation in tumor-bearing mice, and that blocking the c-kit ligand/c-kit receptor interaction can prevent the development of Treg and reverse immune tolerance induced by MDSC. Since c-kit can be readily inhibited by several small molecule inhibitors including imatinib, sunitinib and dasatinib, targeting immune suppressing cells can be readily accomplished in the clinic.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)12-19
Number of pages8
JournalCritical Reviews in Oncology/Hematology
Volume77
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2011

Keywords

  • Myeloid-derived suppressor cells
  • Radiation therapy
  • Stem cell factor (c-kit)
  • Sunitinib
  • T regulatory cells
  • Tumor immunotherapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology

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