Therapeutic prospects of targeting myeloid-derived suppressor cells and immune checkpoints in cancer

Salman M. Toor, Eyad Elkord*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)


Immune evasion is a characteristic of most human malignancies and is induced via various mechanisms. Immunosuppressive cells, including myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSC) and regulatory T cells (Treg), are key mediators in assisting tumors to escape immune surveillance. Expansion of MDSC, Treg and elevated levels of immune checkpoints (IC) are frequently detected in the tumor microenvironment and periphery of cancer patients. Various therapeutic agents have been shown to target MDSC and to block IC for inducing anti-tumor immunity and reversal of tumor immune escape. Importantly, some recent studies have shown that MDSC targeting improves the efficacy of IC blockade in cancer therapy. However, there is a pressing need to improve our understanding of the distinct role of these cells to develop combination therapy that attacks tumor cells from all frontiers to improve cancer therapeutics. Herein, we discuss the role of MDSC in cancer progression, interactions with IC in the context of anti-cancer immunity and the current therapeutic strategies to target MDSC and block IC in cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)888-897
Number of pages10
JournalImmunology and Cell Biology
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Cancer
  • immune checkpoint inhibitors
  • immune checkpoints
  • MDSC


Dive into the research topics of 'Therapeutic prospects of targeting myeloid-derived suppressor cells and immune checkpoints in cancer'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this