ENPP1 Immunobiology as a Therapeutic Target

Clin Cancer Res. 2023 Jun 13;29(12):2184-2193. doi: 10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-22-1681.


ENPP1 (ecto-nucleotide pyrophosphatase/phosphodiesterase) participates in the hydrolysis of different purine nucleotides in an array of physiologic processes. However, ENPP1 is frequently overexpressed in local relapses and tumor metastases, which are associated with poor prognosis and survival in a range of solid tumors. ENPP1 promotes an immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment (TME) by tilting the balance of ATP/adenosine (Ado) in conjunction with other components (CD38, CD39/ENTPD1, and CD73/NT5E). Moreover, ENPP1 intersects with the stimulator of interferon genes (STING), impairing its robust immune response through the hydrolysis of the effector 2´,3´-cyclic GMP-AMP. Thus, ENPP1 blockade emerges as a unique target eliciting immune remodeling and leveraging the STING pathway. Several ENPP1 inhibitors have shown an immunostimulatory effect, and their combination with other therapeutic modalities, such as immune-checkpoint blockade, STING activation, DNA damage response (DDR) inhibitors, and radiotherapy (RT), represents a promising avenue to boost antitumor-immune responses and to improve current clinical outcomes in several tumors. This comprehensive review summarizes the current state of the art and opens new perspectives for novel treatment strategies.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenosine*
  • Humans
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local*
  • Phosphoric Diester Hydrolases / genetics
  • Tumor Microenvironment


  • Adenosine
  • Phosphoric Diester Hydrolases