Intractable Rare Dis Res. 2017;6(4):234-241. (DOI: 10.5582/irdr.2017.01059)

The paradoxical role of tumor-infiltrating immune cells in lung cancer.

Zheng XD, Hu YH, Yao CF


Lung cancer remains one of the leading causes of death worldwide, and lung cancers have often already metastasized when diagnosed. Numerous studies have noted the infiltration of immune cells in the lung cancer microenvironment, but these cells play a dualistic role, i.e. they suppress and/or promote tumor development and growth based on tumor progression and different cytokines in the microenvironment. These tumor-infiltrating immune cells create different microenvironments depending on their type and interaction. Chemokines act as a bridge in this process by recruiting immune cells to the tumor site and they regulate the phenotypes and functions of those cells. The current review summarizes current knowledge about the tumor-infiltrating immune cells in lung cancer as well as the mechanisms involved in suppression and promotion of tumor development and growth.

KEYWORDS: Lung cancer, tumor microenvironment, infiltrating immune cells, chemokine

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