Detection of Lung Tumor Associated Antigens Utilizing the Horseradish Peroxidase Immunostaining Technique
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Lung cancer occurs more frequently than any other type of cancer in the United States, claiming nearly 90,000 lives in 1977. The prognosis offered by the existing modes of treatment (chemotherapy, radiotherapy, and surgery) is usually only fair to poor for the majority of cases, thus reflecting the high mortality rate. Therapy is most severely limited by the fact that the diagnosis is made only after advanced stages of malignancy have been reached. Prognosis would undoubtedly improve if these modes of treatment were to be employed at earlier stages (primarily before distant metastasis occurs). It has been shown that malignant cells can express cellular and secretory proteins that are suppressed in the normal cell counterpart. Ir these proteins are in fact unique to tumor cells, they may be of some value as tumor marker$. The indirect horseradish peroxidase immunostaining technique can be used to identify lung cancer cells through these antigenic markers. This procedure utilizes rabbit antibodies that have been synthesized in response to an injected extract of tumor protein (or antigen). In this study, five antisera were tested for reactivity against paraffin embedded control tissues, followed by 37 lung cancer tissues. Two of the five antisera were found to be highly reactive against lung cancer. The implications of these findings as well as the possible clinical applications of the technique will be discussed.