Interactions of tumor cells with dendritic cells: balancing immunity and tolerance

Cell Death Differ. 2008 Jan;15(1):39-50. doi: 10.1038/sj.cdd.4402247. Epub 2007 Oct 19.


Dendritic cells (DCs) are antigen-presenting cells specialized to initiate and maintain immunity and tolerance. DCs initiate immune responses in a manner that depends on signals they receive from pathogens, surrounding cells and their products. Most tumors are infiltrated by DCs. Thus, interactions between DCs and dying tumor cells may determine the balance between immunity and tolerance to tumor cells. In addition, DCs also display non-immunologic effects on tumors and the tumor microenvironment. Therefore, improved understanding of the cross talk between tumor cells and DCs may suggest new approaches to improve cancer therapy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Death
  • Cytokines / immunology
  • Cytokines / metabolism*
  • Dendritic Cells / immunology*
  • Dendritic Cells / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Immune Tolerance
  • Immunity, Cellular
  • Immunotherapy
  • Neoplasms / immunology*
  • Neoplasms / pathology
  • Neoplasms / physiopathology*
  • Neoplasms / therapy
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / immunology
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / immunology
  • Toll-Like Receptors / immunology
  • Toll-Like Receptors / metabolism*


  • Cytokines
  • Receptors, Cell Surface
  • Toll-Like Receptors