Research ArticleImmunology

The adhesion molecule PECAM-1 enhances the TGF-β–mediated inhibition of T cell function

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Science Signaling  08 Mar 2016:
Vol. 9, Issue 418, pp. ra27
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.aad1242

Sticking it to T cells

Because of its immunosuppressive effects and abundance in tumor microenvironments, the cytokine transforming growth factor–β (TGF-β) inhibits the antitumor activities of T cells. Targeting TGF-β systemically would interfere with other functions of TGF-β; thus, therapies that block the effects of TGF-β specifically on T cells are needed. Newman et al. found that T cells without the adhesion molecule PECAM-1 were less sensitive to the TGF-β–mediated inhibition of their function than were PECAM-1–positive cells. In a tumor model, PECAM-1–deficient mice exhibited reduced tumor size compared to wild-type mice. Thus, targeting PECAM-1 may specifically enhance the antitumor activity of T cells.

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