Transcripts with ESTs derived exclusively or predominantly from testis, and not from other normal tissues, are likely to be products of genes with testis-restricted expression, and are thus potential cancer/testis (CT) antigen genes. A list of 371 genes with such characteristics was compiled by analyzing publicly available EST databases. RT-PCR analysis of normal and tumor tissues was performed to validate an initial selection of 20 of these genes. Several new CT and CT-like genes were identified. One of these, CT46/HORMAD1, is expressed strongly in testis and weakly in placenta; the highest level of expression in other tissues is <1% of testicular expression. The CT46/HORMAD1 gene was expressed in 31% (34/109) of the carcinomas examined, with 11% (12/109) showing expression levels >10% of the testicular level of expression. CT46/HORMAD1 is a single-copy gene on chromosome 1q21.3, encoding a putative protein of 394 aa. Conserved protein domain analysis identified a HORMA domain involved in chromatin binding. The CT46/HORMAD1 protein was found to be homologous to the prototype HORMA domain-containing protein, Hop1, a yeast meiosis-specific protein, as well as to asy1, a meiotic synaptic mutant protein in Arabidopsis thaliana.