Single-cell analyses implicate ascites in remodeling the ecosystems of primary and metastatic tumors in ovarian cancer

Nat Cancer. 2023 Aug;4(8):1138-1156. doi: 10.1038/s43018-023-00599-8. Epub 2023 Jul 24.


Ovarian cancer (OC) is an aggressive gynecological tumor usually diagnosed with widespread metastases and ascites. Here, we depicted a single-cell landscape of the OC ecosystem with five tumor-relevant sites, including omentum metastasis and malignant ascites. Our data reveal the potential roles of ascites-enriched memory T cells as a pool for tumor-infiltrating exhausted CD8+ T cells and T helper 1-like cells. Moreover, tumor-enriched macrophages exhibited a preference for monocyte-derived ontogeny, whereas macrophages in ascites were more of embryonic origin. Furthermore, we characterized MAIT and dendritic cells in malignant ascites, as well as two endothelial subsets in primary tumors as predictive biomarkers for platinum-based chemotherapy response. Taken together, our study provides a global view of the female malignant ascites ecosystem and offers valuable insights for its connection with tumor tissues and paves the way for potential markers of efficacy evaluation and therapy resistance in OC.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Ascites* / pathology
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes / pathology
  • Ecosystem
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Ovarian Neoplasms*
  • Single-Cell Analysis