Abstract The monoclonal antibody NCRC-11 defines antigens associated with secretory glandular epithelia as well as most epithelial malignancies. These components have been identified in, and isolated from, normal body fluids including urine and skim milk. The immunoadsorbent purified antigens from urine and milk were very similar to those purified from breast and ovarian carcinomas; by sodium dodecyl sulphate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS PAGE) and immunoblotting, NCRC-11 antibody-binding antigens from all sources were of high apparent molecular weight (> 400 kD) with the major component(s) present as a single band or a doublet. Also, by analysing epitope profiles, all purified antigen preparations were shown to react in a characteristic manner with a panel of monoclonal antibodies which were originally produced against human milk products or materials from tumours. Since it was shown that NCRC-11 antigens were released from tissues in a soluble form, the possibility that these antigens might represent a diagnostic marker for breast cancer was evaluated. The findings obtained indicated that NCRC-11 antigens were elevated in the serum of advanced breast cancer patients in comparison to healthy control females, so that access to the circulation was available to these products released from the tumour but not to those released from normal epithelia.