High frequency of the MAGE-1 gene expression in hepatocellular carcinoma

Hepatology. 1996 Dec;24(6):1437-40. doi: 10.1053/jhep.1996.v24.pm0008938177.


The MAGE-1 gene, originally isolated from a human melanoma cell line, directs the expression of a potential tumor-rejection antigen, MZ2-E. This antigen is recognized by autologous cytotoxic T lymphocytes in association with a major histocompatibility complex class I molecule (HLA-A1), and has provided a basis for specific immunotherapy for melanoma patients. Here we show a high frequency of expression of the MAGE-1 gene in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). We examined the expression of the MAGE-1 gene in cell lines originated from hepatoma cells and in tumor and nontumor tissues of livers with HCC by reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and subsequent Southern blotting. MAGE-1 messenger RNA (mRNA) was expressed in three of four HCC cell lines (75%) and in 16 of 20 (80%) resected HCCs though none was detected in nontumor tissues. The high frequency expression of MAGE-1 gene in HCCs suggests the possibility as a target for tumor-specific immunotherapy for HCC patients.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Aged
  • Antigens, Neoplasm / biosynthesis
  • Blotting, Southern
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / metabolism*
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / pathology
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / surgery
  • Cell Line
  • DNA Primers
  • Female
  • Gene Expression*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Liver Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Liver Neoplasms / pathology
  • Liver Neoplasms / surgery
  • Male
  • Melanoma-Specific Antigens
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Oligonucleotide Probes
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured


  • Antigens, Neoplasm
  • DNA Primers
  • MAGEA1 protein, human
  • Melanoma-Specific Antigens
  • Neoplasm Proteins
  • Oligonucleotide Probes