Chemokines and chemokine receptors: new insights into cancer-related inflammation

Trends Mol Med. 2010 Mar;16(3):133-44. doi: 10.1016/j.molmed.2010.01.003. Epub 2010 Feb 15.


Chemokines are involved in cellular interactions and tropism in situations frequently associated with inflammation. Recently, the importance of chemokines and chemokine receptors in inflammation associated with carcinogenesis has been highlighted. Increasing evidence suggests that chemokines are produced by tumor cells as well as by cells of the tumor microenvironment including cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs), mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), endothelial cells, tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs) and more recently tumor-associated neutrophils (TANs). In addition to affecting tumor cell proliferation, angiogenesis and metastasis, chemokines also seem to modulate senescence and cell survival. Here, we review recent progress on the roles of chemokines and chemokine receptors in cancer-related inflammation, and discuss the mechanisms underlying chemokine action in cancer that might facilitate the development of novel therapies in the future.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Chemokines / metabolism*
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Heterocyclic Compounds / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / complications
  • Inflammation / drug therapy
  • Inflammation / metabolism*
  • Models, Biological
  • Neoplasms / complications
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Receptors, CXCR4 / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Receptors, CXCR4 / metabolism
  • Receptors, Chemokine / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Receptors, Chemokine / metabolism*


  • Chemokines
  • Heterocyclic Compounds
  • Receptors, CXCR4
  • Receptors, Chemokine
  • plerixafor