About this Research Topic
Platelets are the second most abundant cells in the blood circulation and contribute to cancer progression from the initial tumor development to the formation of new blood vessels in metastases. Although these facts are well-known for decades, novel findings have impressively confirmed further aspects on the key role of platelets in tumorigenicity. For instance, platelets foster the progress from steatohepatitis to liver cirrhosis and finally hepatocellular carcinoma. Furthermore, platelets have the ability to shift the tumor cell phenotype from an epithelial to a mesenchymal one, which confers stem cell-like properties to the cancers cells associated with enhanced invasiveness. Since platelets contain a plethora of molecules with diverse immunological functions, they are able to wane the immune response of T cells against melanoma cells and contribute to an immunosuppressive microenvironment. Thus, the impact of platelets on the tumor microenvironment is still ambiguous and warrants further in-depth research.
Given recent evidence showing that an anticoagulative therapy, which also targets platelet activity, could hold beneficial effects for cancer patients, we speculate that a personalized platelet therapy implies the comprehensive option to control tumor progression. Nevertheless, to efficiently interfere in the platelet tumor cell communication, a deeper understanding of the relevant mechanisms is required. Thus, in this Research Topic, we welcome authors to contribute original research and review articles that will stimulate the continuing efforts to understand the molecular mechanisms that platelets exert on cancer and immune cells. In that regard, articles dealing with new inhibitory strategies to tackle platelets in cancer cell vicinity as well as articles applying platelets as carrier systems for novel cytostatic drugs or in terms of biomarkers or liquid biopsies for cancer staging are also requested. Furthermore, articles integrating platelet inhibitory and immunotherapy (immune checkpoint pathway inhibitors) approaches or strategies are highly appreciated.
· Impact of platelets on immune cell development in the tumor microenvironment (e.g. Tregs, MDSCs).
· New inhibitory strategies to tackle the platelet tumor cell interaction.
· Platelets and their proteome as biomarkers for cancer progression and metastasis (liquid biopsy).
· Impact of platelets on cancer stem cell formation and consequences for cytostatic treatment and drugs.
· Molecular mechanisms of platelet tumor cell interaction.
· Platelet-derived molecules and their impact on cancer progression.
· Platelets or platelet-based nanoparticles as carrier systems for drugs.
· Impact of platelets and platelet-derived molecules on checkpoint inhibitor approaches.
Keywords: platelets, cancer, tumor microenvironment, immunotherapy, metastasis
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.