Mast cells as regulators of adaptive immunity to tumours


R. J. Noelle, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Dartmouth Medical School, Lebanon, NH 03756, USA.


The observation that mast cells accumulate at the periphery of growing tumours is now well documented, and the loss of mast cells correlates with reduced tumour growth. The role of mast cells as innate regulators of both inflammatory and immunosuppressive responses slowly becomes clear as novel tools become available. This review will address the role of mast cells in tumours and how they can interact with the local immune environment to mediate immune suppression contributing to tumour escape.