Engineering nanoparticles to reprogram the tumor immune microenvironment for improved cancer immunotherapy

Madiha Saeed, Jing Gao, Yang Shi, Twan Lammers, Haijun Yu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

94 Citations (Scopus)
38 Downloads (Pure)


Immunotherapy is rapidly maturing towards extensive clinical use. However, it does not work well in large patient populations because of an immunosuppressed microenvironment and limited reinvigoration of antitumor immunity. The tumor microenvironment is a complex milieu in which the principles of physiology and anatomy are defied and which is considered an immune-privileged site promoting T cell exhaustion. Tremendous research interest exists in developing nanoparticle-based approaches to modulate antitumor immune responses. The increasing use of immunotherapies in the clinic requires robust programming of immune cells to boost antitumor immunity. This review summarizes recent advances in the engineering of nanoparticles for improved anticancer immunotherapy. It discusses emerging nanoparticle-based approaches for the modulation of tumor cells and immune cells, such as dendritic cells, T cells and tumor-associated macrophages, with the intention to overcome challenges currently faced in the clinic. Furthermore, this review describes potentially curative combination therapeutic approaches to provoke effective tumor antigen-specific immune responses. We foresee a future in which improvement in patient's surveillance will become a mainstream practice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7981-8000
Number of pages20
Issue number26
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Antitumor immune response
  • Cancer immunotherapy
  • Immune microenvironment programming
  • Nanoparticles


Dive into the research topics of 'Engineering nanoparticles to reprogram the tumor immune microenvironment for improved cancer immunotherapy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this