We have identified 2 antigens recognized by several melanoma-specific cytolytic T lymphocyte clones isolated from a melanoma patient with a clinical history of tumor regression after immunotherapy. Both antigens are presented by HLA-A2 and encoded by gene MAGE-C2, a cancer-germline gene shown previously to be silent in normal somatic tissues and expressed in 40% of melanomas and in other tumor types. One antigen corresponds to peptide ALKDVEERV(336-344), whereas the other corresponds to peptide LLFGLALIEV(191-200). The CTL clones recognizing these 2 peptides also recognized allogeneic tumor cell lines expressing MAGE-C2 and HLA-A2. These 2 new peptides are the first known MAGE-C antigens and represent promising targets for cancer immunotherapy.
Copyright 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc.