Targeting tumor associated macrophages (TAMs) via nanocarriers.
Recruitment of inflammatory cells to tumor has been well documented, with the most frequent inhabitants being macrophages termed as tumor associated macrophages, (TAMs). Their presence was thought to be an evidence of immune system initiating a fight response towards the tumor, i.e. immune surveillance. This is the case too initially, when TAMs majorly exhibit an M1 phenotype, but their continued presence in tumor microenvironment brings about their polarization to M2 phenotype, which not only participate in continued sustenance of existing tumor but also open up deleterious avenues for further progression and metastasis of cancer. Current perspective is built around this very premise and focuses specifically on TAMs and how they are being targeted by researchers working in annals of nanomedicine. To do so, we dwell into tumor microenvironment and focus on nanotechnology based drug delivery aspects which have either been already or can be potentially employed in the future to target tumor associated macrophages for improved immunoadjuvant therapy of cancer.