Science Advances paper Yuanzhou Gu

Why are mesenchymal cancer cells more resistant to cytotoxic T-cell mediated killing than epithelial cancer cells?

Science Advances paper Yuanzhou Gu

When cancer cells switch from epithelial to mesenchymal state after exposure to cytokine TGF-b, the cancer cells become more invasive, metastatic and chemotherapy resistant. Now we show that the mesenchymal cancer cells are also less efficiently killed by cytotoxic T-cells. Using CRISPR screens, we identified specific properties of pancreatic mesenchymal cancer that allow these cells to evade CD8+ T-cell killing. The study reveals multiple targets to improve immunotherapy for better pancreatic cancer patient outcomes.


Gu Y, Zhang Z, Camps MGM, Ossendorp F, Wijdeven RH, Ten Dijke P. Genome-wide CRISPR screens define determinants of epithelial-mesenchymal transition mediated immune evasion by pancreatic cancer cells. Sci Adv. 2023 Jul 14;9(28):eadf9915. doi: 10.1126/sciadv.adf9915. Epub 2023 Jul 14. PMID: 37450593.


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