Elucidating tumour-associated microglia/macrophage diversity along glioblastoma progression and under ACOD1 deficiency

Yolanda Pires-Afonso, Arnaud Muller, Kamil Grzyb, Anaïs Oudin, Yahaya A. Yabo, Carole Sousa, Andrea Scafidi, Aurélie Poli, Antonio Cosma, Rashi Halder, Djalil Coowar, Anna Golebiewska, Alexander Skupin, Simone P. Niclou, Alessandro Michelucci*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


In glioblastoma (GBM), tumour-associated microglia/macrophages (TAMs) represent the major cell type of the stromal compartment and contribute to tumour immune escape mechanisms. Thus, targeting TAMs is emerging as a promising strategy for immunotherapy. However, TAM heterogeneity and metabolic adaptation along GBM progression represent critical features for the design of effective TAM-targeted therapies. Here, we comprehensively study the cellular and molecular changes of TAMs in the GL261 GBM mouse model, combining single-cell RNA-sequencing with flow cytometry and immunohistological analyses along GBM progression and in the absence of Acod1 (also known as Irg1), a key gene involved in the metabolic reprogramming of macrophages towards an anti-inflammatory phenotype. Similarly to patients, we identify distinct TAM profiles, mainly based on their ontogeny, that reiterate the idea that microglia- and macrophage-like cells show key transcriptional differences and dynamically adapt along GBM stages. Notably, we uncover decreased antigen-presenting cell features and immune reactivity in TAMs along tumour progression that are instead enhanced in Acod1-deficient mice. Overall, our results provide insight into TAM heterogeneity and highlight a novel role for Acod1 in TAM adaptation during GBM progression.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3167-3191
Number of pages25
JournalMolecular Oncology
Issue number17
Early online date15 Jul 2022
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2022


  • ACOD1/IRG1
  • glioblastoma
  • heterogeneity
  • metabolic reprogramming
  • single-cell RNA-sequencing
  • tumour-associated microglia/macrophages


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