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Myeloid derived suppressor cells – a new therapeutic target in the treatment of cancer

Robert Wesolowski1, Joseph Markowitz2 and William E Carson3*

Author Affiliations

1 Division of Medical Oncology, B401 Starling Loving Hall, W10th Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210, USA

2 Division of Medical Oncology, 406C Starling Loving Hall 320 W 10th Ave, Columbus, OH 43210, USA

3 The Ohio State University Comprehensie Cancer Center, N911 Doan Hall, 410 West 10th Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210, USA

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Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer 2013, 1:10  doi:10.1186/2051-1426-1-10

Published: 15 July 2013


Myeloid Derived Suppressor Cells (MDSC) are a heterogeneous population of immature myeloid cells that are increased in states of cancer, inflammation and infection. In malignant states, MDSC are induced by tumor secreted growth factors. MDSC play an important part in suppression of host immune responses through several mechanisms such as production of arginase 1, release of reactive oxygen species and nitric oxide and secretion of immune-suppressive cytokines. This leads to a permissive immune environment necessary for the growth of malignant cells. MDSC may also contribute to angiogenesis and tumor invasion. This review focuses on currently available strategies to inhibit MDSC in the treatment of cancer.

Myeloid derived suppressor cells; Immunotherapy; Tumor immunology; Cancer vaccines