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Tumor Biology

, Volume 33, Issue 2, pp 507–513 | Cite as

Localization of FOXP3-positive cells in renal cell carcinoma

  • Katharina Sell
  • Peter J. Barth
  • Roland Moll
  • Martin A. Thomas
  • Nadine Zimmer
  • Ecatarina Oplesch
  • Michael Gudo
  • Mark Schrader
  • Rainer Hofmann
  • Andres Jan Schrader
Research Article

Abstract

Regulatory T cells (Treg cells), which are lymphocyte subsets capable of suppressing immune responses, appear to play a crucial role in maintaining immune homeostasis and mediating peripheral tolerance. However, Treg cells also accumulate in cancer patients and have been implicated in tumor immune escape. The forkhead box P3 (FOXP3) transcription factor is currently regarded as the most specific and reliable marker for Treg cells in men. We investigated the frequency and characterized the distribution of FOXP3+ cells in renal cell carcinoma (RCC) patients, focusing on the tumor microenvironment. FOXP3 expression was assessed in kidney tissue samples from 32 RCC patients by reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and immunohistochemistry. Both conventional and quantitative RT-PCR disclosed higher FOXP3 expression levels in RCC than in adjacent normal renal tissue. Immunohistochemical staining of FOXP3-expressing cells confirmed the accumulation of FOXP3+ cells in tumor tissue, particularly at the border between malignant and adjacent benign kidney tissues. Our findings indicate that Treg cells accumulate at the tumor invasion zone and could thus be part of an immune escape mechanism of RCC that promotes disease progression.

Keywords

Kidney cancer Regulatory T cells Location Immunohistochemistry PCR 

Notes

Conflicts of interest

None

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Copyright information

© International Society of Oncology and BioMarkers (ISOBM) 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Katharina Sell
    • 1
  • Peter J. Barth
    • 2
    • 3
  • Roland Moll
    • 2
  • Martin A. Thomas
    • 4
  • Nadine Zimmer
    • 1
  • Ecatarina Oplesch
    • 1
  • Michael Gudo
    • 4
  • Mark Schrader
    • 5
  • Rainer Hofmann
    • 1
  • Andres Jan Schrader
    • 1
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of UrologyPhilipps University Medical CenterMarburgGermany
  2. 2.Institute of PathologyPhilipps University Medical CenterMarburgGermany
  3. 3.Institute of PathologyMuenster University Medical CenterMuensterGermany
  4. 4.Morphisto GmbHFrankfurtGermany
  5. 5.Department of UrologyUlm University Medical CenterUlmGermany

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