Research Topic

From Chronic Inflammation to Cancer: How Far Can Immunotherapy Go?

About this Research Topic

Chronic inflammation is tied to cancer. Tumor growth depends not only on the genetic mutations that happen in individual cells, but also in inflammatory cells, immune cells and blood vessels of the surrounding microenvironment. A prolonged state of inflammation can damage the body's immune function and ultimately increase the risk of cancer. Uncontrollable inflammation is an important factor that changes the microenvironment, and is closely related to the occurrence, development, invasion and metastasis of tumors. Treatments that activate the immune system can be divided into the following categories: (I) innate immune activation; (II) immune checkpoint blocker; (III) Cancer vaccine; and (IV) chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapy. Techniques making use of novel nanomaterial, drug delivery systems, and antibody engineering to name a few have broad application prospects in the field of chronic inflammation and cancer treatment. Many examples have been known to be able to regulate the host immune system, thereby affecting tumorigenesis, tumor development or the metastasis process and some of these cases have even become the subject of human clinical trials.

For some patients that are even in an advanced stage of cancer, after receiving conventional therapies, the use of immunotherapy treatment was still able to alleviate or even stop the further development of the patient's condition. Notably, the side effects suffered by the patient during the remission period of several years are also lighter. Here, we are dedicated to developing new strategies and treatments to activate the immune system in the setting of chronic inflammation and in cancer patients, in order to discover novel drugs for immune activation or evasion strategies that can be used to fight against chronic inflammation and cancer. Moreover, we would like to showcase research that focuses on exploring the use of novel materials or drug delivery systems, synthetic antibody engineering, and the prospects of targeted drugs in the field of immunotherapy, while pointing out relevant demonstrations to further promote the application of immunotherapy in the field of chronic inflammation and cancer.

The effectiveness of tumor treatment is the main concern for both patients and clinicians. Immunotherapy such as PD-1/PD-L1 also faces many challenges. For example, the proportion of people who respond to immunotherapy is still not high, although when combined with chemotherapy or radiotherapy the response rate is improved, but there is still a long way to go when it comes to targeting and fully vanquishing tumors. In addition, there are a great number of cases with so called "cold tumors" that render immunotherapy even less effective. At the same time, even with immunotherapy, it should be noted that many patients still that experience drug resistance. Therefore, basic and clinical immunotherapeutic frameworks have emerged in unison, both making use of emerging immunotherapy drugs that possess the following four new elements: theory, design, data and target.

With this Research Topic, we welcome submission of Original Research, Review, and Case Report articles, including but not limited to the following topics:

• Immunotherapy application in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
• Autoimmune disease and antibody therapy.
• Immune checkpoints exploration in tumorigenesis and metastasis.
• Novel nano chimeric antibody drug delivery system.
• Novel nanotechnology for immunotherapy.
• Microenvironment and immunotherapy.


Keywords: Chronic inflammation, cancer, target therapy, immunotherapy, drug delivery


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.

Chronic inflammation is tied to cancer. Tumor growth depends not only on the genetic mutations that happen in individual cells, but also in inflammatory cells, immune cells and blood vessels of the surrounding microenvironment. A prolonged state of inflammation can damage the body's immune function and ultimately increase the risk of cancer. Uncontrollable inflammation is an important factor that changes the microenvironment, and is closely related to the occurrence, development, invasion and metastasis of tumors. Treatments that activate the immune system can be divided into the following categories: (I) innate immune activation; (II) immune checkpoint blocker; (III) Cancer vaccine; and (IV) chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapy. Techniques making use of novel nanomaterial, drug delivery systems, and antibody engineering to name a few have broad application prospects in the field of chronic inflammation and cancer treatment. Many examples have been known to be able to regulate the host immune system, thereby affecting tumorigenesis, tumor development or the metastasis process and some of these cases have even become the subject of human clinical trials.

For some patients that are even in an advanced stage of cancer, after receiving conventional therapies, the use of immunotherapy treatment was still able to alleviate or even stop the further development of the patient's condition. Notably, the side effects suffered by the patient during the remission period of several years are also lighter. Here, we are dedicated to developing new strategies and treatments to activate the immune system in the setting of chronic inflammation and in cancer patients, in order to discover novel drugs for immune activation or evasion strategies that can be used to fight against chronic inflammation and cancer. Moreover, we would like to showcase research that focuses on exploring the use of novel materials or drug delivery systems, synthetic antibody engineering, and the prospects of targeted drugs in the field of immunotherapy, while pointing out relevant demonstrations to further promote the application of immunotherapy in the field of chronic inflammation and cancer.

The effectiveness of tumor treatment is the main concern for both patients and clinicians. Immunotherapy such as PD-1/PD-L1 also faces many challenges. For example, the proportion of people who respond to immunotherapy is still not high, although when combined with chemotherapy or radiotherapy the response rate is improved, but there is still a long way to go when it comes to targeting and fully vanquishing tumors. In addition, there are a great number of cases with so called "cold tumors" that render immunotherapy even less effective. At the same time, even with immunotherapy, it should be noted that many patients still that experience drug resistance. Therefore, basic and clinical immunotherapeutic frameworks have emerged in unison, both making use of emerging immunotherapy drugs that possess the following four new elements: theory, design, data and target.

With this Research Topic, we welcome submission of Original Research, Review, and Case Report articles, including but not limited to the following topics:

• Immunotherapy application in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
• Autoimmune disease and antibody therapy.
• Immune checkpoints exploration in tumorigenesis and metastasis.
• Novel nano chimeric antibody drug delivery system.
• Novel nanotechnology for immunotherapy.
• Microenvironment and immunotherapy.


Keywords: Chronic inflammation, cancer, target therapy, immunotherapy, drug delivery


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.

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Submission Deadlines

31 May 2021 Abstract
30 September 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

31 May 2021 Abstract
30 September 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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