The tumor
microenvironment (TME)

Tumors are a highly integrated mass of cellular and molecular components, composed not only of various types of cancerous cells but also of many resident and visiting host cell types, together with soluble factors and proteins. The tumor microenvironment is a dynamic network, within which the interplay of many factors influences the path of cancer progression or resolution and where host cells collaborate to protect tumor cells from the natural immune defense. Genenta’s platform exploits the host cells within that microenvironment to deliver therapeutics and to modify the immunological response within the tumor. 



Prominent among the key interacting elements within the tumor microenvironment are TEMs (Tie2-Expressing Monocytes), a subset of tumor-associated myeloid cells first characterized in 2005 by one of Genenta’s scientific founders, Luigi Naldini, and his colleagues at the San Raffaele Institute in Milan. When recruited to tumors, TEMs promote vascularization (angiogenesis), thereby encouraging tumor growth. TEMs are transient visitors to tumors, recruited from peripheral blood and re-supplied from stem cells in bone marrow. The tyrosine kinase receptors on the surfaces of TEMs were considered a target for the design of novel anticancer therapies.


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