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Oncoimmunology. 2012 Dec 1;1(9):1661-1663.

How imiquimod licenses plasmacytoid dendritic cells to kill tumors.

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Institute of Cancer Research; Department of Medicine I; Comprehensive Cancer Center; Medical University of Vienna; Vienna, Austria.


We have provided evidence for a multifaceted antitumor-function of the Toll-like receptor 7 (TLR7) agonist imiquimod, which rapidly recruits plasmacytoid dendritic cells and possibly other immune cells into tumors by inducing the secretion of CCL2 by dermal cells. Imiquimod induces pDC maturation and their conversion into cytolytic killer cells, which are capable of eliminating tumors independently from the adaptive immune system.

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