A testicular antigen aberrantly expressed in human cancers detected by autologous antibody screening
Carcinoma, Renal Cell
Extracellular Matrix Proteins
Nerve Tissue Proteins
Serological analysis of recombinant cDNA expression libraries (SEREX) using tumor mRNA and autologous patient serum provides a powerful approach to identify immunogenic tumor antigens. We have applied this methodology to a case of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma and identified several candidate tumor targets. One of these, NY-ESO-1, showed restricted mRNA expression in normal tissues, with high-level mRNA expression found only in testis and ovary tissues. Reverse transcription-PCR analysis showed NY-ESO-1 mRNA expression in a variable proportion of a wide array of human cancers, including melanoma, breast cancer, bladder cancer, prostate cancer, and hepatocellular carcinoma. NY-ESO-1 encodes a putative protein of Mr 17,995 having no homology with any known protein. The pattern of NY-ESO-1 expression indicates that it belongs to an expanding family of immunogenic testicular antigens that are aberrantly expressed in human cancers in a lineage-nonspecific fashion. These antigens, initially detected by either cytotoxic T cells (MAGE, BAGE, GAGE-1) or antibodies [HOM-MEL-40(SSX2), NY-ESO-1], represent a pool of antigenic targets for cancer vaccination.