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Pancreatic Cancer Linked Macrophages Reprogrammed by Collagen

Scientists have discovered a regulatory mechanism through which macrophages associated with pancreatic tumors engulf and break down collagen in the extracellular matrix to trigger desmoplasia, a process of fibrotic tissue formation around a tumor that protects cancer cells from immune attacks and treatments. Reprogramming this cancer-promoting mechanism could alter the composition of the tumor microenvironment and help develop new treatment options for this devastating malignancy.