MAGE-A family: attractive targets for cancer immunotherapy

Vaccine. 2011 Nov 3;29(47):8496-500. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2011.09.014. Epub 2011 Sep 18.


The melonoma-associated antigens family A (MAGE-A) belongs to cancer/testis antigens (CTA) that are expressed in a wide variety of malignant tumors but not in normal adult tissues except for testis. Interestingly, germ cells do not express MHC class I antigen, implying that these gene products should be ideal targets for cancer immunotherapy. The strict tumor-specific expression of MAGE-As has led to several immunotherapeutic trials targeting some of these proteins. In this review, we briefly described the expression and activation mechanism of MAGE-As in cancer. We also summarized the biological functions of MAGE-As in cell progress and the progress of the cancer immunotherapy targeting MAGE-A family.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cancer Vaccines / administration & dosage*
  • Cancer Vaccines / immunology*
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Humans
  • Immunotherapy / methods*
  • Melanoma-Specific Antigens / immunology*
  • Melanoma-Specific Antigens / metabolism
  • Neoplasms / therapy*


  • Cancer Vaccines
  • Melanoma-Specific Antigens