Research Perspectives:

T cell- but not tumor cell-produced TGF-β1 promotes the development of spontaneous mammary cancer

Abira Sarkar, Moses K. Donkor and Ming O. Li _

PDF  |  HTML  |  How to cite

Oncotarget. 2011; 2:1339-1351. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.403

Metrics: PDF 2271 views  |   HTML 3202 views  |   ?  


Abira Sarkar1, Moses K. Donkor1, and Ming O. Li1

1 Immunology Program, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY 10065

Received: December 22, 2011; Accepted: December 23, 2011; Published: December 31, 2011;

Keywords: TGF-β, T cell tolerance, immunosurveillance, tumor immunity, metastasis, immunotherapy


Dr. Ming O. Li, email:


During their development, tumors acquire multiple capabilities that enable them to proliferate, disseminate and evade immunosurveillance. A putative mechanism is through the production of the cytokine TGF-β1. We showed in our recent studies that T cell-produced TGF-β1 inhibits antitumor T cell responses to foster tumor growth raising the question of the precise function of TGF-β1 produced by tumor cells in tumor development. Here, using a transgenic model of mammary cancer, we report that deletion of TGF-β1 from tumor cells did not protect mice from tumor development. However, ablation of TGF-β1 from T cells significantly inhibited mammary tumor growth. Additionally, absence of TGF-β1 in T cells prevented tumors from advancing to higher pathological grades and further suppressed secondary tumor development in the lungs. These findings reveal T cells but not tumor cells as a critical source of TGF-β1 that promotes tumor development.

Creative Commons License All site content, except where otherwise noted, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
PII: 403