Neutrophil diversity and plasticity in tumour progression and therapy

Sebastien Jaillon, Andrea Ponzetta, Diletta Di Mitri, Angela Santoni, Raffaella Bonecchi, Alberto Mantovani

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


Neutrophils play a key role in defence against infection and in the activation and regulation of innate and adaptive immunity. In cancer, tumour-associated neutrophils (TANs) have emerged as an important component of the tumour microenvironment. Here, they can exert dual functions. TANs can be part of tumour-promoting inflammation by driving angiogenesis, extracellular matrix remodelling, metastasis and immunosuppression. Conversely, neutrophils can also mediate antitumour responses by direct killing of tumour cells and by participating in cellular networks that mediate antitumour resistance. Neutrophil diversity and plasticity underlie the dual potential of TANs in the tumour microenvironment. Myeloid checkpoints as well as the tumour and tissue contexture shape neutrophil function in response to conventional therapies and immunotherapy. We surmise that neutrophils can provide tools to tailor current immunotherapy strategies and pave the way to myeloid cell-centred therapeutic strategies, which would be complementary to current approaches.

Original languageEnglish
JournalNature Reviews Cancer
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Jul 21 2020

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    Jaillon, S., Ponzetta, A., Di Mitri, D., Santoni, A., Bonecchi, R., & Mantovani, A. (2020). Neutrophil diversity and plasticity in tumour progression and therapy. Nature Reviews Cancer.