Intraperitoneal cancer-immune microenvironment promotes peritoneal dissemination of gastric cancer

Shuichi Sakamoto, Shunsuke Kagawa, Kazuya Kuwada, Atene Ito, Hiroki Kajioka, Yoshihiko Kakiuchi, Megumi Watanabe, Tetsuya Kagawa, Ryuichi Yoshida, Satoru Kikuchi, Shinji Kuroda, Hiroshi Tazawa, Toshiyoshi Fujiwara

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26 Citations (Scopus)


A solid tumor consists of cancer and stromal cells, which comprise the tumor microenvironment (TME). Tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs) are usually abundant in the TME, contributing to tumor progression. In cases of peritoneal dissemination of gastric cancer (GC), the contribution of intraperitoneal TAMs remains unclear. Macrophages from peritoneal washings of GC patients were analyzed, and the link between intraperitoneal TAMs and GC cells was investigated to clarify the interaction between them in peritoneal dissemination. Macrophages were predominant among leukocytes constituting the microenvironment of the peritoneal cavity. The proportion of CD163-positive TAMs was significantly higher in stage IV than in stage I GC. Co-culture with TAMs potentiated migration and invasion of GC. IL-6 was the most increased in the medium of in vitro co-culture of macrophages and GC, and IL-6 elevation was also observed in the peritoneal washes with peritoneal dissemination. An elevated concentration of intraperitoneal IL-6 was correlated with a poor prognosis in clinical cases. In conclusion, intraperitoneal TAMs are involved in promoting peritoneal dissemination of GC via secreted IL-6. TAM-derived IL-6 could be a potential therapeutic target for peritoneal dissemination of GC.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere1671760
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2 2019


  • Gastric cancer
  • peritoneal dissemination
  • tumor microenvironment
  • tumor-associated macrophages

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Oncology


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