Detection of anti-CUEC-23 antibodies in serum of patients with esophageal squamous cell carcinoma: a possible new serum marker for esophageal cancer
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Serological identification of antigens by recombinant cDNA expression cloning (SEREX) is an established method for detecting new tumor-specific antigens. Antibodies to SEREX antigens may be useful for the detection of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (SCC).
A phage cDNA library of a human esophageal SCC cell line was screened using sera of patients with esophageal SCC. The presence and levels of serum antibodies to SEREX antigens were established by Western blotting and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) using purified recombinant antigen proteins, respectively.
The newly identified esophageal SCC antigen is encoded by a novel gene located on chromosome 1, here designated CUEC-23. Serum CUEC-23-antibodies (s-CUEC-23-Abs) were detected in 14 of 54 patients with esophageal SCC (26%) by Western blot analysis. Esophageal SCCs were positive for s-CUEC-23-Abs together with CEA, SCC-Ag or CYFRA21-1 in 44, 41 and 52% of cases, respectively. There was no detectable association between the presence of s-CUEC-23-Abs and clinicopathological variables. ELISA showed that the levels of s-CUEC-23-Abs were significantly higher in patients with esophageal SCC than in healthy volunteers (17% in the former using the mean + 3 SD of s-CUEC-23-Abs in healthy controls as the cutoff).
A new tumor antigen, CUEC-23, was identified by SEREX screening. s-CUEC-23-Abs might be a useful serum marker to detect esophageal SCC.
KeywordsEsophageal carcinoma SEREX Serum tumor marker
Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay
Fetal calf serum
Squamous cell carcinoma
Serological identification of antigens by recombinant cDNA expression cloning
The 21st Century COE (Center of Excellence) Program and Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (nos. 17591370 and 16390372) from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan. We thank Ms. Masae Suzuki and Akiko Kimura for their helpful technical assistance.
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