May 22, 2024
Global Sanger Sequencing Market

New Discovery Reveals How Glioblastoma Manipulates Immune Cells to Promote Tumor Growth

A team of scientists led by Dr. Filippo Veglia from The Wistar Institute have uncovered a novel immunosuppressive mechanism in glioblastoma, a deadly and often untreatable brain cancer. Their findings, published in the journal Immunity, shed light on how monocyte-derived macrophages contribute to the tumor’s evasion of the immune system.

The research team discovered that as glioblastoma progresses, monocyte-derived macrophages increasingly outnumber microglia, the native immune cells of the central nervous system. This shift in cellular composition within the tumor microenvironment is advantageous to the cancer, as monocyte-derived macrophages suppress the activity of T cells – immune cells responsible for destroying tumor cells.

In preclinical models and patient samples, the researchers confirmed that monocyte-derived macrophages, but not microglia, inhibit T cell function. They further demonstrated that reducing the number of monocyte-derived macrophages in glioblastoma models led to improved outcomes, indicating their role in the tumor’s immunosuppressive microenvironment.

Glioblastoma is the most common primary brain tumor, accounting for over half of all malignant brain tumors. Despite advances in treatment, the prognosis for patients diagnosed with glioblastoma remains poor, with only 25% surviving beyond one year. The tumor’s location in the brain and its immunosuppressive microenvironment make it resistant to many promising immunotherapies.

The Veglia lab’s discovery provides new insights into the cellular mechanisms underlying glioblastoma’s immunosuppressive microenvironment. By understanding how the cancer manipulates immune cells like macrophages to work for, rather than against, the tumor, researchers can develop new strategies to target and disrupt these immunosuppressive mechanisms, potentially improving treatment outcomes for glioblastoma patients.

1. Source: Coherent Market Insights, Public sources, Desk research
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