Single-cell level analysis is powerful tool to assess the heterogeneity of cellular components in tumor microenvironments (TME). In this study, we investigated immune-profiles using the single-cell analyses of endoscopically- or surgically-resected tumors, and peripheral blood mononuclear cells from gastric cancer patients. Furthermore, we technically characterized two distinct platforms of the single-cell analysis; RNA-seq-based analysis (scRNA-seq), and mass cytometry-based analysis (CyTOF), both of which are broadly embraced technologies. Our study revealed that the scRNA-seq analysis could cover a broader range of immune cells of TME in the biopsy-resected small samples of tumors, detecting even small subgroups of B cells or Treg cells in the tumors, although CyTOF could distinguish the specific populations in more depth. These findings demonstrate that scRNA-seq analysis is a highly-feasible platform for elucidating the complexity of TME in small biopsy tumors, which would provide a novel strategies to overcome a therapeutic difficulties against cancer heterogeneity in TME.
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