open access

Vol 8, No 2 (2015)
Review paper
Published online: 2015-06-22
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Mast cells and their role in immunity and cancer

Joanna Kopeć-Szlęzak
Journal of Transfusion Medicine 2015;8(2):49-59.

open access

Vol 8, No 2 (2015)
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Published online: 2015-06-22

Abstract

Mast cells are important components of the innate immune system. Earlier mast cells were only known for their important role in allergic reactions. Mast cells play a critical role in both innate and adaptive immunity including bacterial and viral infections, and as immunomodulator. Mast cells are active in inflammation, immune tolerance and in cancer development. Mast cells are bone marrow derived long-lived population in tissues, but their immature forms circulate in blood. Mast cells show an expression of membrane receptor FceR1, Toll-like receptors, c-Kit and complement receptors, which regulate activation and degranulation processes. Also adhesion molecules (ICAM-1, CADM-1) as well as tetraspanins and costimulation molecules are observed on membrane of most mast cells. Mast cells content of dense secretory granules which are filled with large amounts of preformed compounds (histamine, heparine, proteases, TNF-a and de novo synthesized leukotrienes, cytokines and chemokines). Classical degranulation of secretory granules from mast cells SNARE protein involves during fusion of granules with the cell surface. In bacterial and some viral infections mast cells recognize pathogens using TLR receptors and initiate a process of inflammation. In the network of immune interaction functional contacts between mast cells and regulatory T cells (Treg) and stimulation others leukocytes (neutrophils) are observed.

Mast cells are a component of cancer microenvironment, as well as anticancer element (recruit cytotoxic cells) and procancer activity (mainly promote cancer growth by stimulation of angiogenesis and enhancing immunosuppression), also in hematological malignancies. Deregulated mast cell development leads to systemic mastocytosis and/or mast cell leukemia.  

Abstract

Mast cells are important components of the innate immune system. Earlier mast cells were only known for their important role in allergic reactions. Mast cells play a critical role in both innate and adaptive immunity including bacterial and viral infections, and as immunomodulator. Mast cells are active in inflammation, immune tolerance and in cancer development. Mast cells are bone marrow derived long-lived population in tissues, but their immature forms circulate in blood. Mast cells show an expression of membrane receptor FceR1, Toll-like receptors, c-Kit and complement receptors, which regulate activation and degranulation processes. Also adhesion molecules (ICAM-1, CADM-1) as well as tetraspanins and costimulation molecules are observed on membrane of most mast cells. Mast cells content of dense secretory granules which are filled with large amounts of preformed compounds (histamine, heparine, proteases, TNF-a and de novo synthesized leukotrienes, cytokines and chemokines). Classical degranulation of secretory granules from mast cells SNARE protein involves during fusion of granules with the cell surface. In bacterial and some viral infections mast cells recognize pathogens using TLR receptors and initiate a process of inflammation. In the network of immune interaction functional contacts between mast cells and regulatory T cells (Treg) and stimulation others leukocytes (neutrophils) are observed.

Mast cells are a component of cancer microenvironment, as well as anticancer element (recruit cytotoxic cells) and procancer activity (mainly promote cancer growth by stimulation of angiogenesis and enhancing immunosuppression), also in hematological malignancies. Deregulated mast cell development leads to systemic mastocytosis and/or mast cell leukemia.  

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Keywords

mast cells, mast cells in immunity, mast cells in cancer

About this article
Title

Mast cells and their role in immunity and cancer

Journal

Journal of Transfusion Medicine

Issue

Vol 8, No 2 (2015)

Article type

Review paper

Pages

49-59

Published online

2015-06-22

Bibliographic record

Journal of Transfusion Medicine 2015;8(2):49-59.

Keywords

mast cells
mast cells in immunity
mast cells in cancer

Authors

Joanna Kopeć-Szlęzak

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