Using immunoproteomics to identify tumor-associated antigens (TAAs) as biomarkers in cancer immunodiagnosis

Autoimmun Rev. 2013 Oct;12(12):1123-8. doi: 10.1016/j.autrev.2013.06.015. Epub 2013 Jun 24.


Since intracellular proteins involved in carcinogenesis have been shown to provoke autoantibody responses, autoantibodies can be used as probes in immunoproteomics to isolate, identify, and characterize potential tumor-associated antigens (TAAs). Once a TAA is identified, several approaches will be used to comprehensively characterize and validate the identified TAA/anti-TAA systems that are potential biomarkers in certain types of cancer. Our ultimate goal is to establish rigorous criteria for designation of an autoantibody to a TAA as a cancer biomarker, examine candidate TAAs for sensitivity and specificity of anti-TAA antibody response, and further develop customized TAA arrays that can be used to enhance anti-TAA antibody detection in cancer. This review will mainly focus on the recent advances in our studies using immunoproteomic approach to identify and characterize TAAs as biomarkers in cancer.

Keywords: Autoantibody; Cancer; Immunodiagnosis; Immunoproteomics; Tumor-associated antigen.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antigens, Neoplasm* / immunology
  • Autoantibodies / immunology
  • Biomarkers
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / analysis*
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Neoplasms / immunology
  • Proteomics / methods*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • Antigens, Neoplasm
  • Autoantibodies
  • Biomarkers
  • Biomarkers, Tumor