PerspectiveCANCER IMMUNOLOGY

Identifying the infiltrators

Science  23 May 2014:
Vol. 344, Issue 6186, pp. 801-802
DOI: 10.1126/science.1255117

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Summary

The mammalian immune system both suppresses and tolerates tumors, so understanding this complexity should benefit the development of cancer therapies. Macrophages are proposed to play an important role in suppressing the immune response to cancer cells, but it is not clear where these immune cells come from or whether there are distinct populations of macrophages with specific roles in this setting. On page 921 of this issue, Franklin et al. (1) forge a more coherent view of macrophages that are associated with tumor growth by assessing their origin, phenotype, and functions in an animal model of breast cancer.