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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(3), 645;

TIM-3 as a Target for Cancer Immunotherapy and Mechanisms of Action

Department of Respiratory Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital of Soochow University, Suzhou 215006, China
Department of Immunology, School of Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, EBST E1047, 200 Lothrop Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15261, USA
Department of Immunology, School of Biology and Basic Medical Science, Soochow University, Suzhou 215123, China
Department of Ophthalmology, The Second Hospital of Jilin University, Changchun 130041, China
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Li Yang
Received: 23 January 2017 / Revised: 3 March 2017 / Accepted: 6 March 2017 / Published: 16 March 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tumor Microenvironment and Metabolism)
Full-Text   |   PDF [806 KB, uploaded 16 March 2017]   |  


Cancer immunotherapy has produced impressive clinical results in recent years. Despite the success of the checkpoint blockade strategies targeting cytotoxic T lymphocyte antigen 4 (CTLA-4) and programmed death receptor 1 (PD-1), a large portion of cancer patients have not yet benefited from this novel therapy. T cell immunoglobulin and mucin domain 3 (TIM-3) has been shown to mediate immune tolerance in mouse models of infectious diseases, alloimmunity, autoimmunity, and tumor Immunity. Thus, targeting TIM-3 emerges as a promising approach for further improvement of current immunotherapy. Despite a large amount of experimental data showing an immune suppressive function of TIM-3 in vivo, the exact mechanisms are not well understood. To enable effective targeting of TIM-3 for tumor immunotherapy, further in-depth mechanistic studies are warranted. These studies will also provide much-needed insight for the rational design of novel combination therapy with other checkpoint blockers. In this review, we summarize key evidence supporting an immune regulatory role of TIM-3 and discuss possible mechanisms of action. View Full-Text
Keywords: TIM-3; T cell subsets; tumor microenvironment; antitumor immune responses TIM-3; T cell subsets; tumor microenvironment; antitumor immune responses

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Du, W.; Yang, M.; Turner, A.; Xu, C.; Ferris, R.L.; Huang, J.; Kane, L.P.; Lu, B. TIM-3 as a Target for Cancer Immunotherapy and Mechanisms of Action. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18, 645.

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