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Cancers 2014, 6(2), 756-770; doi:10.3390/cancers6020756
Article

Effect of the Premalignant and Tumor Microenvironment on Immune Cell Cytokine Production in Head and Neck Cancer

1
, 2,3
 and 2,3,4,*
1 Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Medical University of South Carolina, 173 Ashley Avenue, Charleston, SC 29425, USA 2 Department of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Medical University of South Carolina, 135 Rutledge Avenue, Charleston, SC 29425, USA 3 Department of Medicine, Medical University of South Carolina, 96 Jonathan Lucas Street, Charleston, SC 29425, USA 4 Medical Research Service (151), Ralph H. Johnson Veterans Affairs Medical Center, 109 Bee Street, Charleston, SC 29401, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 10 January 2014 / Revised: 12 March 2014 / Accepted: 14 March 2014 / Published: 2 April 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cytokines in Cancer)
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Abstract

Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) is marked by immunosuppression, a state in which the established tumor escapes immune attack. However, the impact of the premalignant and tumor microenvironments on immune reactivity has yet to be elucidated. The purpose of this study was to determine how soluble mediators from cells established from carcinogen-induced oral premalignant lesions and HNSCC modulate immune cell cytokine production. It was found that premalignant cells secrete significantly increased levels of G-CSF, RANTES, MCP-1, and PGE2 compared to HNSCC cells. Splenocytes incubated with premalignant supernatant secreted significantly increased levels of Th1-, Th2-, and Th17-associated cytokines compared to splenocytes incubated with HNSCC supernatant. These studies demonstrate that whereas the premalignant microenvironment elicits proinflammatory cytokine production, the tumor microenvironment is significantly less immune stimulatory and may contribute to immunosuppression in established HNSCC.
Keywords: head and neck cancer; immunosuppression; tumor microenvironment; cytokines head and neck cancer; immunosuppression; tumor microenvironment; cytokines
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Johnson, S.D.; De Costa, A.-M.A.; Young, M.R.I. Effect of the Premalignant and Tumor Microenvironment on Immune Cell Cytokine Production in Head and Neck Cancer. Cancers 2014, 6, 756-770.

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