Published in Cancer Detection and Prevention 2001; 25(2):117-122.

Detection of Serum Autoantibodies to Tumor Suppressor Gene p53 with a New Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay in Patients with Ovarian Cancer

Dagmar Marx, PhDa, Manfred Frey, PhDb, H. Zentgraf, PhDb, Gesa Adelssenc, Alfred Schauer, MDc, Walther Kuhn, MDa, and Harald Meden, MDa

Departments of a Obstetrics and Gynecology and Pathology, University of Göttingen, Göttingen, Germany, and b German Cancer Research Center, Heidelberg, Germany

Address all correspondence and reprint requests to: Dagmar Marx, PhD. c/o Prof. Harald Meden, MD. Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Göttingen, Robert-Koch-Str. 40, D-37075 Göttingen, Germany.

ABSTRACT: Sera from 99 ovarian cancer patients were assayed for serum autoantibodies to p53 using a newly developed enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Results were compared to the investigation using the former ELISA. The incidence of autoantibodies (25%) was lower using the newly developed ELISA as compared to the previous results (41%). The results were consistent in 79% of patients (P < .001). The incidence of autoantibodies was lower in patients with complete remission (19%) as compared to that of patients with recurrence (30%) and before primary surgery (26%). No statistically significant correlation was found among p53 serum autoantibody status and tumor stage, degree of malignancy, histologic subtype, and residual tumor after primary surgery. Use of the newly developed ELISA resulted in a higher consensus between immunohistochemically negative and autoantibody negative cases. Owing to further purifying of the prepared human recombinant p53, the newly developed ELISA seems to be of higher specificity as compared to the former ELISA.

KEY WORDS: p53, autoantibodies, immunohistochemistry, ovarian cancer, serum.