Macrophage Polarization: Tumor-Associated Macrophages as a Paradigm for Polarized M2 Mononuclear Phagocytes

Trends Immunol. 2002 Nov;23(11):549-55. doi: 10.1016/s1471-4906(02)02302-5.

Abstract

Mononuclear phagocytes are versatile cells that can express different functional programs in response to microenvironmental signals. Fully polarized M1 and M2 (or alternatively activated) macrophages are the extremes of a continuum of functional states. Macrophages that infiltrate tumor tissues are driven by tumor-derived and T cell-derived cytokines to acquire a polarized M2 phenotype. These functionally polarized cells, and similarly oriented or immature dendritic cells present in tumors, have a key role in subversion of adaptive immunity and in inflammatory circuits that promote tumor growth and progression.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Chemokines / biosynthesis
  • Cytokines / biosynthesis
  • Humans
  • Macrophage Activation
  • Macrophages / classification
  • Macrophages / immunology*
  • Macrophages / pathology
  • Models, Immunological
  • Neoplasms / immunology*
  • Neoplasms / pathology
  • Phagocytes / classification
  • Phagocytes / immunology
  • Phagocytes / pathology
  • Signal Transduction

Substances

  • Chemokines
  • Cytokines