Promotion of ICD via Nanotechnology

Macromol Biosci. 2023 Sep;23(9):e2300093. doi: 10.1002/mabi.202300093. Epub 2023 May 7.


Immunotherapy represents the most promising treatment strategy for cancer, but suffers from compromised therapeutic efficiency due to low immune activity of tumor cells and an immunosuppressive microenvironment, which significantly hampers the clinical translations of this treatment strategy. To promote immunotherapy with desired therapeutic efficiency, immunogenic cell death (ICD), a particular type of death capable of reshaping body's antitumor immune activity, has drawn considerable attention due to the potential to stimulate a potent immune response. Still, the potential of ICD effect remains unsatisfactory because of the intricate tumor microenvironment and multiple drawbacks of the used inducing agents. ICD has been thoroughly reviewed so far with a general classification of ICD as a kind of immunotherapy strategy and repeated discussion of the related mechanism. However, there are no published reviews, to the authors' knowledge, providing a systematic summarization on the enhancement of ICD via nanotechnology. For this purpose, this review first discusses the four stages of ICD according to the development mechanisms, followed by a comprehensive description on the use of nanotechnology to enhance ICD in the corresponding four stages. The challenges of ICD inducers and possible solutions are finally summarized for future ICD-based enhanced immunotherapy.

Keywords: immunogenic cell death; immunotherapy; nanoparticles.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents* / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Immunogenic Cell Death
  • Immunotherapy
  • Nanotechnology
  • Neoplasms* / drug therapy
  • Tumor Microenvironment


  • Antineoplastic Agents