The Role of the Thomsen-Friedenreich Antigen As a Tumor-Associated Molecule
Environmental Health Perspectives
The Thomsen-Friedenreich antigen (Gal-GalNAc) represents a tumor-associated molecule, which is assumed to be one of the few chemically well-defined antigens with a proven association with malignancy. In order to analyze the role of the carbohydrate structure Gal-GalNAc for gastrointestinal tumors, we immunized Balb/c mice with MCF-7 breast tumor cells together with synthetic Gal-GalNAc linked to a BSA carrier. One monoclonal antibody (82-A6) was established which recognizes the
... he Thomsen-Friedenreich antigen according to the biochemical and serological analysis presented here. In contrast to the studies performed in the past, immunohistochemical results using this antibody 82-A6 did not exhibit a reactivity clearly restricted to tumors. Preliminary biochemical analysis revealed that the T-determinant is detectable in the high-molecular weight range (about 1000 kD), suggesting that the Gal-GalNAc epitope is found on mucinlike glycoproteins. Tumor restriction of Thomsen-Friedenreich antigen may therefore be determined either by the protein backbone or by the 3-glycosidic linkage of the carbohydrate structure to the protein.