Human high molecular weight-melanoma-associated antigen: Utility for detection of metastatic melanoma in sentinel lymph nodes

Yasufumi Goto, Soldano Ferrone, Takaaki Arigami, Minoru Kitago, Atsushi Tanemura, Eiji Sunami, Sandy L. Nguyen, Roderick R. Turner, Donald L. Morton, Dave S.B. Hoon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Detection of micrometastasis in melanoma-draining lymph nodes is important for staging and prognosis. Immunohistochemical staining (IHC) using S-100p-HMB-45-, and MART-1 - specfic antibodies is used for detecting metastases in sentinel lymph nodes (SLN). However, improvement in IHC is needed for melanoma micrometastasis detection. Experimental Design: Paraffin-embedded archival tissue (PEAT) specimens were obtained from 42 non-SLN macrometastases, 42 SLN metastases, and 16 tumor-negative SLNs of 100 melanoma patients who underwent SLN biopsy. PEAT specimens were assessed by IHC with high molecular weight-melanoma-associated antigen (HMW-MAA)-specific monoclonal antibodies (mAb) and with S-100p-, HMB-45-, and MART-1 -specific antibodies. Quantitative real-time reverse-transcriptase PCR assay was used for HMW-MAA and MART-1 mRNA detection. Results: Expression frequency and immunostaining intensity were higher for HMW-MAA than MART-1 in nodal macrometastases (P < 0.0001 and P < 0.0001, respectively) and microme-tastases (P < 0.0001 and P = 0.004, respectively). All 52 (100%) macrometastases were positive with HMW-MAA-specific mAbs, whereas 43 (83%) were positive with MART-1 - specific mAbs. In a comparison analysis, 23 of 23 (100%) micrometastases were HMW-MAA - positive, whereas 21 (91%) and 18 (78%) specimens were S-100p- and HMB-45- positive, respectively. Quantitative real-time reverse-transcriptase PCR analysis of 48 nodal metastases showed HMW-MAA mRNA detection in SLNs with metastases. Conclusions: HMW-MAA is more sensitive and specific than MART-1, S-100p, and HMB-45 for IHC-based detection of SLN micrometastases. SLN PEAT-based detection specificity of melanoma micrometastases can be improved by IHC with HMW-MAA - specific mAbs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3401-3407
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Cancer Research
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2008 Jun 1
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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