Dendritic cells and cancer: From biology to therapeutic intervention

Ben Wylie, Christophe Macri, Justine D. Mintern, Jason Waithman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

95 Citations (Web of Science)


Inducing effective anti-tumor immunity has become a major therapeutic strategy against cancer. Dendritic cells (DC) are a heterogenous population of antigen presenting cells that infiltrate tumors. While DC play a critical role in the priming and maintenance of local immunity, their functions are often diminished, or suppressed, by factors encountered in the tumor microenvironment. Furthermore, DC populations with immunosuppressive activities are also recruited to tumors, limiting T cell infiltration and promoting tumor growth. Anti-cancer therapies can impact the function of tumor-associated DC and/or alter their phenotype. Therefore, the design of effective anti-cancer therapies for clinical translation should consider how best to boost tumor-associated DC function to drive anti-tumor immunity. In this review, we discuss the different subsets of tumor-infiltrating DC and their role in anti-tumor immunity. Moreover, we describe strategies to enhance DC function within tumors and harness these cells for effective tumor immunotherapy.

Original languageEnglish
Article number521
Number of pages21
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2019


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