Cells of the innate immune system have a dual role in cancer development in both tumor initiation and progression. Innate immune cells can, on the one hand, aid malignant transformation and tumor outgrowth and, on the other hand, prevent tumor progression. The innate immune system has the ability to tune the inflammatory response and is a key player in cancer-related inflammation, which can precede the development of malignancy or be induced by oncogenic changes promoting a protumor inflammatory milieu. In this review, we discuss the emerging cellular and molecular mechanisms of the innate immune system and inflammation in tumor initiation and progression, and point to the outstanding questions that remain.
Keywords: cancer development; inflammation; innate immune cells.
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