British journal of haematology

Serological identification of adult T-cell leukaemia-associated antigens.

PMID 16042687


Adult T-cell leukaemia (ATL) is a peripheral T-cell neoplasm caused by human T-cell leukaemia virus type I (HTLV-I). Several clinical observations suggest that some tumour-associated antigens in ATL may be recognised by the immune system. In this study, we performed the serological screening of an expression library to identify ATL-associated antigens by using materials from a unique ATL patient with long-term stable disease. Among five distinct genes isolated, serine/arginine protein kinase 1 (SRPK1), which has been reported to have a restricted normal tissue distribution, was found to be overexpressed in most acute type ATL samples, but not in chronic type ATL or in normal peripheral blood mononuclear cells by real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction. Interestingly, the overexpression of SRPK1 in aggressive types of ATL was more exclusively observed at the protein level than at the mRNA level. Autologous antibody to SRPK1 was confirmed in the ATL patient using Western blot analysis with plasma, but not detected in asymptomatic HTLV-I carriers or in healthy volunteers. These results indicate that SRPK1 may be useful for the development of therapeutic and diagnostic methods for patients with ATL.