Chronic inflammation is a well-recognized tumor-enabling capability, which allows nascent tumors to escape immunosurveillance. A number of soluble and cellular inflammatory mediators take part in the various phases of cancer initiation and progression, giving rise to a fatal conspiracy, which is difficult to efficiently overcome. Tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs) are pivotal players of the tumor microenvironment and, because of their characteristic plasticity, can acquire a number of distinct phenotypes and contribute in different ways to the various phases of cancerogenesis. Tumor-associated neutrophils (TANs) are also emerging as important components of the tumor microenvironment, given their unexpected heterogeneity and plasticity. TAMs and TANs are both integrated in cancer-related inflammation and an ever better understanding of their functions can be useful to tailor the use of anticancer therapeutic approaches and patient follow-up.
- Journal Article