Five different anti-prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA) antibodies confirm PSMA expression in tumor-associated neovasculature
Prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA) is a type II integral membrane glycoprotein that was initially characterized by the monoclonal antibody (mAb) 7E11. PSMA is highly expressed in prostate secretory-acinar epithelium and prostate cancer as well as in several extraprostatic tissues. Recent evidence suggests that PSMA is also expressed in tumor-associated neovasculature. We examined the immunohistochemical characteristics of 7E11 and those of four recently developed anti-PSMA mAbs (J591, J415, and Hybritech PEQ226.5 and PM2J004.5), each of which binds a distinct epitope of PSMA. Using the streptavidin-biotin method, we evaluated these mAbs in viable prostate cancer cell lines and various fresh-frozen benign and malignant tissue specimens. In the latter, we compared the localization of the anti-PSMA mAbs to that of the anti-endothelial cell mAb CD34. With rare exceptions, all five anti-PSMA mAbs reacted strongly with the neovasculature of a wide spectrum of malignant neoplasms: conventional (clear cell) renal carcinoma (11 of 11 cases), transitional cell carcinoma of the urinary bladder (6 of 6 cases), testicular embryonal carcinoma (1 of 1 case), colonic adenocarcinoma (5 of 5 cases), neuroendocrine carcinoma (5 of 5 cases), glioblastoma multiforme (1 of 1 cases), malignant melanoma (5 of 5 cases), pancreatic duct carcinoma (4 of 4 cases), non-small cell lung carcinoma (5 of 5 cases), soft tissue sarcoma (5 of 6 cases), breast carcinoma (5 of 6 cases), and prostatic adenocarcinoma (2 of 12 cases). Localization of the anti-PSMA mAbs to tumor-associated neovasculature was confirmed by CD34 immunohistochemistry in sequential tissue sections. Normal vascular endothelium in non-cancer-bearing tissue was consistently PSMA negative. The anti-PSMA mAbs reacted with the neoplastic cells of prostatic adenocarcinoma (12 of 12 cases) but not with the neoplastic cells of any other tumor type, including those of benign and malignant vascular tumors (0 of 3 hemangiomas, 0 of 1 hemangioendothelioma, and 0 of 1 angiosarcoma). The mAbs to the extracellular PSMA domain (J591, J415, and Hybritech PEQ226.5) bound viable prostate cancer cells (LNCaP and PC3-PIP), whereas the mAbs to the intracellular domain (7E11 and Hybritech PM2J004.5) did not. All five anti-PSMA mAbs reacted with fresh-frozen benign prostate secretory-acinar epithelium (28 of 28 cases), duodenal columnar (brush border) epithelium (11 of 11 cases), proximal renal tubular epithelium (5 of 5 cases), colonic ganglion cells (1 of 12 cases), and benign breast epithelium (8 of 8 cases). A subset of skeletal muscle cells was positive with 7E11 (7 of 7 cases) and negative with the other four anti-PSMA mAbs. PSMA was consistently expressed in the neovasculature of a wide variety of malignant neoplasms and may be an effective target for mAb-based antineovasculature therapy.