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Frontiers in cancer: tumor microenvironment

Submission Deadline: 31 December 2023 Submit to Special Issue

Guest Editors

Dr. Yingkun Xu, Shandong Provincial Hospital, Cheeloo College of Medicine, Shandong University, Jinan, China.
Prof. Guibao Li, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Shandong University, Jinan, China.


Tumor microenvironment (TME) refers to the surrounding microenvironment where tumor cells exist, including surrounding blood vessels, immune cells, fibroblasts, bone marrow-derived inflammatory cells, various signaling molecules and extracellular matrix. TME is closely related to the occurrence and development of tumors, and they interact continuously. Tumors can affect their microenvironment by releasing cell signaling molecules, promoting tumor angiogenesis and inducing immune tolerance. In contrast, immune cells in TME can affect the growth and development of cancer cells. Furthermore, different components in the TME play critical roles in cellular plasticity. Plasticity is a major feature of the TME's influence on tumor recurrence, leading to reversible transitions between tumorigenic and non-tumorigenic cells.


Due to the role of TME, various types of cancers are prone to recurrence, progression, and metastasis. In recent years, with the application and development of technologies such as tumor bulk tissue sequencing and single-cell transcriptome sequencing, the composition of TME has become increasingly clear, and the complex communication network between cells has been fully explored, providing a new perspective for cancer treatment. Since TME is an important potential therapeutic target in cancer treatment, it is necessary to explore the interactions and biological functions of each component in TME to elucidate the detailed mechanism of cancer development.


This special issue aims to collate original studies and review articles exploring promising TME-related anti-cancer targets, which can aid in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer. Potential topics include but are not limited to the following:


TME-related biomarkers can be used for the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer

TME-associated biomarkers can influence anti-cancer drug resistance during cancer treatment

TME-associated biomarkers can be used to determine cancer pathogenesis

Signaling mechanism and interaction among TME components

Exploring the potential role of the TME in cancer progression using genomics approaches and biological models


TME; cancer research; cancer recurrence; precision medicine; cell signaling

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