Two members of the human MAGEB gene family located in Xp21.3 are expressed in tumors of various histological origins

Genomics. 1997 Dec 15;46(3):397-408. doi: 10.1006/geno.1997.5052.


Genes of the MAGE family direct the expression of tumor antigens recognized on a human melanoma by autologous cytolytic T lymphocytes. Twelve closely related MAGE genes are located in the Xq28 region. These genes share 60-98% nucleotide identity in their coding region. The presence of homologous genes in a region of Xp21.3 has been reported previously. We obtained the complete sequence of a 42-kb stretch of this region. It contains four MAGE-related genes, which we propose to name MAGE-B1, B2, B3, and B4 (HGMW-approved symbols MAGEB1, MAGEB2, MAGEB3, and MAGEB4). The coding regions of these genes share 66-81% nucleotide identity and show 45-63% identity with those of the MAGE genes located in Xq28. Like the MAGE genes located in Xq28, the MAGE-B genes are silent in normal tissues with the exception of testis. Like MAGE-1, 2, 3, 4, 6 and 12 (HGMW-approved symbols MAGEA1, 2, 3, 4, 6, and 12), genes MAGE-B1 and MAGE-B2 are expressed in a significant fraction of tumors of various histological types. The transcription of MAGE-B1 and MAGE-B2 can be induced by 5-aza-2'-deoxycytidine, suggesting that the activation of these genes in tumors results from a demethylation process.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Alternative Splicing
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Azacitidine / analogs & derivatives
  • Azacitidine / pharmacology
  • Base Sequence
  • DNA, Complementary
  • Decitabine
  • Exons
  • Gene Expression
  • Humans
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Neoplasm Proteins / genetics*
  • Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Sequence Homology, Nucleic Acid
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured
  • X Chromosome*


  • DNA, Complementary
  • Neoplasm Proteins
  • Decitabine
  • Azacitidine

Associated data

  • GENBANK/U93163