Roles of Myeloid-Derived Suppressor Cells in Cancer Metastasis: Immunosuppression and Beyond

  • Amin Pastaki Khoshbin
  • Mahsa Eskian
  • Mahsa Keshavarz-Fathi
  • Nima RezaeiEmail author


Metastasis is the direst face of cancer, and it is not a feature solely dependent on cancer cells; however, a complex interaction between cancer cells and host causes this process. Investigating the mechanisms of metastasis can lead to its control. Myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs) are key components of tumor microenvironment that favor cancer progression. These cells result from altered myelopoiesis in response to the presence of tumor. The most recognized function of MDSCs is suppressing anti-tumor immune responses. Strikingly, these cells are among important players in cancer dissemination and metastasis. They can exert their effect on metastatic process by affecting anti-cancer immunity, epithelial–mesenchymal transition, cancer stem cell formation, angiogenesis, establishing premetastatic niche, and supporting cancer cell survival and growth in metastatic sites. In this article, we review and discuss the mechanisms by which MDSCs contribute to cancer metastasis.


Myeloid-derived suppressor cells Metastasis Immunosuppression Premetastatic niche Angiogenesis Apoptosis 



We would like to thank Dr. Susanna Mandruzzato from Oncology and Immunology Section, Department of Surgery, Oncology and Gastroenterology, University of Padova, Padova, Italy, for evaluation of the manuscript and her expert comments to improve the paper.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare they had no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© L. Hirszfeld Institute of Immunology and Experimental Therapy, Wroclaw, Poland 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Amin Pastaki Khoshbin
    • 1
    • 2
  • Mahsa Eskian
    • 1
    • 3
    • 4
  • Mahsa Keshavarz-Fathi
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 5
  • Nima Rezaei
    • 3
    • 4
    • 6
    • 7
    Email author
  1. 1.Cancer Immunology Project (CIP)Universal Scientific Education and Research Network (USERN)TehranIran
  2. 2.School of MedicineTehran University of Medical SciencesTehranIran
  3. 3.Research Center for Immunodeficiencies, Children’s Medical CenterTehran University of Medical SciencesTehranIran
  4. 4.Network of Immunity in Infection, Malignancy and Autoimmunity (NIIMA)Universal Scientific Education and Research Network (USERN)TehranIran
  5. 5.Breast Cancer Association (BrCA)Universal Scientific Education and Research Network (USERN)TehranIran
  6. 6.Department of Immunology, School of MedicineTehran University of Medical SciencesTehranIran
  7. 7.Cancer Immunology Project (CIP)Universal Scientific Education and Research Network (USERN)SheffieldUK

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