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Resolving the immune landscape of human prostate at a single cell level in health and cancer

The prostate gland produces prostatic fluid, high in zinc and citrate and essential for the maintenance of spermatozoa. Prostate cancer is a common condition with limited treatment efficacy in castration-resistant metastatic disease, including with immune checkpoint inhibitors. We used single-cell RNA-sequencing to perform an unbiased assessment of the cellular landscape of human prostate and identified a previously unappreciated subset of tumour-enriched androgen receptor-negative luminal epithelial cells, with increased expression of cancer-associated genes. We also found a variety of innate and adaptive immune cells in normal prostate that were transcriptionally perturbed in prostate cancer. An exception was a unique, prostate-specific, zinc transporter-expressing macrophage population (MAC-MT), that contributed to tissue zinc accumulation in homeostasis, but showed enhanced inflammatory gene expression in tumours, including T cell-recruiting chemokines. Remarkably, enrichment of the MAC-MT signature in cancer biopsies was associated with improved disease-free survival, suggesting beneficial anti-tumour functions.

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Dataset ID Description Technology Samples
EGAD00001008340 Illumina HiSeq 4000 24
Publications Citations
Resolving the immune landscape of human prostate at a single-cell level in health and cancer.
Cell Rep 37: 2021 110132
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