Research and Reports in Immunology

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Perspective - Research and Reports in Immunology (2023) Volume 6, Issue 4

Dendritic cells: their impact on breast tumor development

Julio Jose *

Department of Infectious Diseases, Yasuj University of Medical Sciences, Yasuj, Iran.

*Corresponding Author:
Julio Jose
Department of Infectious Diseases
Yasuj University of Medical Sciences
Yasuj, Iran.

Received: 01-Aug-2023, Manuscript No. AARRI-23-108392; Editor assigned: 04-Aug-2023,PreQC No. AARRI-23-108392 (PQ); Reviewed:18-Aug-2023,QC No. AARRI-23-108392; Revised:23-Aug-2023, Manuscript No. AARRI-23-108392(R); Published:30-Aug-2023,DOI:10.35841/aarrgs-6.4.159

Citation: Jose J. Dendritic cells: their impact on breast tumor development. Res Rep Immunol. 2022; 6(4):159

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Breast cancer is one of the most prevalent and lethal cancers affecting women worldwide. Despite significant advancements in cancer research and treatment, there is still a need for innovative approaches to combat this formidable disease. In recent years, scientists have discovered that dendritic cells (DCs), a type of immune cell, play a pivotal and intriguing role in the context of breast tumor progression. Acting as "double-agents," dendritic cells have the ability to both promote and suppress breast tumor growth, making them a compelling target for potential therapeutic strategies.[1].

Dendritic cells are an essential component of the immune system, responsible for capturing, processing, and presenting antigens to other immune cells, such as T-cells. Their primary role is to initiate and modulate the body's immune response against foreign invaders, such as pathogens and cancer cells. However, the tumor microenvironment can influence dendritic cells, leading to a phenomenon known as "DC plasticity. In breast tumours, dendritic cells can be educated by the tumor microenvironment to adopt two distinct functional states: immunostimulatory or immunosuppressive. These dual functions are at the heart of dendritic cells' role as "double-agents" in breast cancer. In their immunostimulatory state, dendritic cells are activated and promote a potent anti-tumour immune response. They capture tumor antigens and present them to T-cells, leading to the activation of cytotoxic T-lymphocytes (CTLs). CTLs are the "killer" T-cells that target and destroy cancer cells specifically, thereby inhibiting tumor growth and metastasis [2,3].

Researchers have been exploring ways to enhance the immunostimulatory function of dendritic cells in breast cancer patients. Techniques like dendritic cell vaccines involve harvesting a patient's dendritic cells, loading them with tumor antigens, and then reintroducing them back into the patient. This approach aims to stimulate the patient's immune system to recognize and attack tumor cells effectively. On the other hand, dendritic cells within the tumor microenvironment can also adopt an immunosuppressive state. In this role, they dampen the immune response, promoting tumor tolerance and allowing cancer cells to evade destruction by the immune system. These immunosuppressive dendritic cells may support the survival and expansion of regulatory T-cells (Tregs), which have the function of inhibiting immune responses, including those against tumor cells [4].

The presence of immunosuppressive dendritic cells in breast tumors has raised concerns for cancer therapies aiming to harness the immune system to fight cancer. The immunosuppressive environment created by these cells can hinder the effectiveness of immunotherapies, which rely on unleashing the immune system's full potential to combat cancer. Given their dual nature, dendritic cells represent a tantalizing but complex target for breast cancer therapy. Researchers are actively investigating ways to skew dendritic cells towards their immunostimulatory state while inhibiting their immunosuppressive function within the tumor microenvironment. One approach involves combining dendritic cell vaccines with immune checkpoint inhibitors, which are drugs designed to block molecules that hinder immune responses. By using these inhibitors, researchers aim to override the immunosuppressive signals in the tumor microenvironment, thereby allowing the activated dendritic cells to elicit a more potent anti-tumor immune response. Additionally, other strategies include using small molecules or genetic modifications to manipulate dendritic cells' behavior in favor of anti-tumor immunity. Scientists are also exploring the potential of using nanotechnology to deliver immune-modulating agents directly to dendritic cells, ensuring precise and targeted intervention [5].


The intricate role of dendritic cells as "double-agents" in breast cancer presents both challenges and opportunities for developing novel therapeutic approaches. Harnessing their immunostimulatory potential while overcoming their immunosuppressive influence holds promise for unleashing the full power of the immune system against breast tumors. As research in this field continues to advance, there is hope that dendritic cell-based therapies will contribute significantly to improving breast cancer treatment outcomes and eventually bring us closer to a world free of this devastating disease.



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