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Cell surface antigens of human melanoma identified by monoclonal antibody.

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  • Research Article


Mouse NS-1 myeloma cells were fused with spleen cells from mice that had been immunized with cells from a human melanoma, M1804. Hybrid cells were grown in selective medium and tested for production of antibody to surface antigens of M1804 cells. Three hybrids that produced antibodies that bound to the melanoma cells but not to autologous skin fibroblasts were cloned. Antibodies produced by two of the clones were cytotoxic to M1804 cells in the presence of rabbit complement. Extensive specificity tests showed that the antibodies produced by the clones bound strongly only to M1804 cells; significant, although weaker, binding occurred with 2 of 11 allogeneic melanomas. Apart from weak binding of the antibody produced by one of the clones to a breast carcinoma, binding assays of five carcinomas, one sarcoma, and fibroblasts from 17 individuals were negative, as were cytotoxic tests of 10 lymphoblastoid cell lines and peripheral blood lymphocytes from 68 normal donors and 12 chronic lymphocytic leukemia patients. This suggests that we have identified one or more determinants of a melanoma-associated antigen(s), whose expression is limited to a small proportion of melanomas.

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