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Overall major histocompatibility complex class I expression is not downregulated in cervix cancer, as detected by immunoelectron microscopy
  1. M. A. Van Eijkeren*,
  2. J. P. Roovers*,
  3. V. Oorschot and
  4. H. J. Geuze
  1. * Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University Medical Center, Utrecht, The Netherlands
  2. Laboratory of Cell Biology, University Medical Center, Utrecht, The Netherlands
  1. Address correspondence and reprint requests to: M. A. van Eijkeren, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University Medical Center, P.O. Box 85500, 3508 GA Utrecht, The Netherlands. Email: m.vaneykeren{at}azu.nl

Abstract

Downregulation of major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I molecules in cervix cancer has been proposed as a mechanism for cancer cells to escape immunodetection. By means of light microscopic immunohistochemistry, it has been shown that in 20–70% of cervix cancers MHC class I is downregulated. We have reinvestigated this phenomenon by quantitative immunogold analysis of MHC class I labeling on the plasma membrane of cervix epithelial cells in ten human squamous cancers and ten normal human cervices. We have not found a statistically significant difference in MHC class I expression between normal and cancer cells. The difference with published light microscopic data probably reflects the higher morphologic resolution and quantifiable immunoreactivity of the immunoelectron microscopy.

  • immunoelectron microscopy
  • immunohistochemistry
  • major histocompatibility complex class I
  • squamous cervix cancer

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