Research Article Open Access


Gregory Lee1, Cheng-Yuan Huang1, Suefay Liu1, Chin-Hsiang Chien2 and Song-Nan Chow3
  • 1 University of British Columbia, Canada
  • 2 Yang Ming University, Taiwan
  • 3 National Taiwan University Hospital, Taiwan


While the expression of immunoglobulins and T cell receptors on cancer cells has been well-established for decades, the potential roles and mechanisms of action of these cancerous antigen receptors have not been fully elucidated. A monoclonal antibody designated as RP215, which reacts specifically with the carbohydrate-associated epitope located on the heavy chain region of cancerous immunoglobulins and T cell receptors, was used as a unique probe to study the roles of antigen receptors in the immunology of cancer cells. Through extensive cell-based biological and immunological studies, it was found that both anti-antigen receptors and RP215 demonstrated similar actions on the gene regulations involved in the growth/proliferation of cancer cells, as well as on toll-like receptors involved in innate immunity. In addition, RP215-specific cancerous immunoglobulins are believed to capture or neutralize circulating antigen/antibodies which may be harmful to cancer cells within the human body. In contrast to normal B and T cells and their respective receptors in the conventional immune system, cancer cells co-express both immunoglobulins and T cell receptors and immune protection is exercised by unique mechanisms. For example, these cancer cell-expressed antigen receptors display a lack of class switching, limited hyper-mutation, aberrant glycosylations and a strong influence on the toll-like receptors of cancer cells. Therefore, it is hypothesized that both normal and cancerous immune systems may co-exist and operate simultaneously within the human body. The balance of these two immune factors for respective surveillance and protection may be relevant to the outcome of cancer immunotherapy in humans. A potential therapeutic strategy is being developed by using RP215 as a drug candidate to target cancer cells based on these observations.

American Journal of Immunology
Volume 10 No. 3, 2014, 156-165


Submitted On: 19 September 2014 Published On: 2 October 2014

How to Cite: Lee, G., Huang, C., Liu, S., Chien, C. & Chow, S. (2014). DUAL ROLES OF CANCER CELL-EXPRESSED IMMUNOGLOBULINS IN CANCER IMMUNOLOGY. American Journal of Immunology, 10(3), 156-165.

  • 2 Citations



  • Cancerous Immunoglobulins
  • CA215
  • RP215 Monoclonal Antibody
  • Two Immune Systems
  • Cancer Immunology