One of the most fundamental and challenging questions in the field of cancer is how immunity is transformed from tumor immunosurveillance to tumor-promoting inflammation. Here, we identified the tumor suppressor PDZ-LIM domain–containing protein 2 (PDLIM2) as a checkpoint of alveolar macrophages (AMs) important for lung tumor suppression. During lung tumorigenesis, PDLIM2 expression in AMs is downregulated by ROS-activated transcription repressor BTB and CNC homology 1 (BACH1). PDLIM2 downregulation leads to constitutive activation of the transcription factor STAT3, driving AM protumorigenic polarization/activation and differentiation from monocytes attracted from the circulation to suppress cytotoxic T lymphocytes and promote lung cancer. PDLIM2 downregulation also decreases AM phagocytosis. These findings establish ROS/BACH1/PDLIM2/STAT3 as a signaling pathway driving AMs for lung tumor promotion.


Liwen Li, Fan Sun, Lei Han, Xujie Liu, Yadong Xiao, Alyssa D. Gregory, Steven D. Shapiro, Gutian Xiao, Zhaoxia Qu


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