Construction of random tumor transcriptome expression library for creating and selecting novel tumor antigens
Cancer/testis (CT) antigens are considered promising target molecules for immunotherapy. To efficiently identify potential CT antigens, a testis cDNA library was immunoscreened with sera from hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) patients. We isolated 3 different antigens, AKAP3, CTp11, and UBQLN3. Although AKAP3 and CTp11 have been previously reported as CT antigens, this is the first time that these 2 antigens have been isolated from HCC patients by SEREX. Conventional RT-PCR analysis showed that AKAP3 was frequently present in HCC cell lines (5/7) and HCC tissues (5/10), and the gene was broadly expressed in several cancer types, including breast cancer cell lines (3/6), breast cancer tissues (6/9), colon cancer cell lines (3/10), colon cancer tissues (5/6), ovary cancer cell lines (6/8), ovary cancer tissues (11/16), lung cancer cell lines (4/7) and lung cancer tissues (6/13). By phage plaque analysis, anti-AKAP3 antibody was detected in sera from 15 of 27 HCC patients and 8 of 27 healthy donors. These data suggest that AKAP3 may be useful for diagnosis and immunotherapy in HCC patients.