Tumour samples from 71 patients with stomach cancer, 41 patients with liver metastasis (group A) and 15 patients each in stages II–IV (group B) and stage I (group C) without liver metastasis were analysed. MAGE-A protein expression was evaluated by immunohistochemistry using a 6C1 monoclonal antibody and MAGE-A10 mRNA expression was detected by highly sensitive in situ hybridisation using a cRNA probe. Expressions of MAGE-A protein and MAGE-A10 mRNA in group A were detected in 65.9 and 80.5%, respectively. Both protein and gene showed significantly higher expression in group A than those in groups B (6.7, 26.7%) and C (0, 0%) (P=0.0003, P=<0.0001, respectively). MAGE-A10 mRNA expression in liver metastasis was found in eight (88.9%) out of nine patients. The concordant rate between MAGE-A family protein expression and MAGE-A10 mRNA expression in the primary sites was 81.7% (P<0.0001). MAGE-A10 gene expression was associated with reduced survival duration. The results of this study suggest that MAGE-A10 is a possible target in active immunotherapy for advanced stomach cancer.