Springer Nature is making SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 research free. View research | View latest news | Sign up for updates

The altered expression of MHC-class II determinants on monocytes of cancer patients


The expression of MHC class II determinants Ia.7 (detected by cross reactive mouse anti-Iak antibody) and HLA-DR on monocytes (MO) of gastric and colorectal cancer patients was examined. An increased proportion of MO bearing the Ia.7 determinant was found, while the number of MO expressing DR was not elevated. In gastric cancer patients the increased expression of the Ia.7 determinant was most pronounced in advanced cancer (stage IVA and IVB). The increased expression of this determinant was related to the presence of the tumour as the number of MO expressing Ia.7 decreased 6 months following surgical resection of the tumour. Further, the increased expression of Ia.7 on MO correlated with the tumour infiltration of the serosa. The Ia.7 determinants were mainly expressed on MO which also expressed the receptor for the Fc part of immunoglobulin. Immunostaining in cellular infiltrates surrounding the tumour revealed that Ia.7+ macrophages (MØ) were more numerous than in normal gastric mucosa and severe chronic gastritis and were mostly present in close proximity to tumour cells, while DR+ MØ were mainly localized within the stromal tissue of the tumour and their number was not increased in cancer infiltrates. These observations indicate that the Ia.7+ subpopulation of MØ may be involved in the anti-tumour response of the host.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.


  1. 1.

    Allen C, Hogg N (1987) Elevation of infiltrating mononuclear phagocytes in human colorectal tumors. J Natl Cancer Inst 78:465

  2. 2.

    Allen CA, Hogg N (1987) Association of colorectal tumor epithelium expressing HLA-D/DR with CD8-positive T-cells and mononuclear phagocytes. Cancer Res 47:2919

  3. 3.

    Basham TY, Merigan TC (1983) Recombinant interferon gamma increases HLA-DR synthesis and expression. J Immunol 130:1492

  4. 4.

    Baxevanis CN, Nagy ZA, Klein J (1981) A novel type of T-T cell interaction removes the requirement for I-B region in the H-2 complex. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 78:3809

  5. 5.

    Brown R, Wolman M (1981) Differentiation of macrophages for Lewis lung carcinoma tumour cells in tissue sections by their alpha-naphthyl butyrate esterase activity. Histochem J 13:975

  6. 6.

    Cambell Jr DA, Oehler JR, Tsai CT, LoBuglio AF, Niederhuber JE (1982) Effect of mouse anti-I region antiserum and complement on human mononuclear cell response to concanavalin A. J Immunol 128:2057

  7. 7.

    Fielding JWL, Roginski C, Ellis DJ, Jones BG, Powell J, Waterhouse JA, Brookes VS (1984) Clinicopathological staging of gastric cancer. Br J Surg 71:677

  8. 8.

    Gehan EA (1965) A generalized Wilcoxon test for comparing arbitrarily singly censored samples. Biometrica 52:203

  9. 9.

    Herman J, Kew MC, Rabson AR (1984) Defective interleukin-1 production by monocytes from patients with malignant disease. Cancer Immunol Immunother 16:182

  10. 10.

    Ikezawa Z, Nonaka M, Abe R, Tada T, Nagy ZA, Klein J (1983) Induction of T cell responses in nonresponder mice by abolishing suppression with monoclonal antibodies recognizing A region-controlled, T cell specific determinants. J Immunol 131:1646

  11. 11.

    Janeway C, Bottomly K, Babich J, Conrad P, Conzen S, Jones B, Kye J, Katz M, McVay L, Murphy DB, Tite J (1984) Quantitative variation in Ia antigen expression plays a central role in immune regulation. Immunol Today 5:99

  12. 12.

    Kowalczyk D, Ruggiero I, Zembala M (1985) Monocyte regulation of lymphokine production in cancer patients. J Clin Immunol 19:37

  13. 13.

    Mytar B, Zembala M, Uracz W, Czupryna A (1982) Cytostatic activity on tumour cells of monocytes from patients with gastrointestinal cancer. Cancer Immunol Immunother 130:190

  14. 14.

    Nunez G, Giles RC, Ball I, Hurley CK, Capra JD, Stastny P (1984) Expression of HLA-DR, MB, MT and SB antigens on human mononuclear cells: Identification of two phenotypically distinct monocyte subpopulations. J Immunol 133:1300

  15. 15.

    Ozato K, Mayer N, Sachs D (1980) Hybridoma cell lines secreting monoclonal antibodies to mouse H-2 and Ia antigens. J Immunol 124:533

  16. 16.

    Rowe DJ, Beverley PCL (1984) Characterization of breast cancer infiltrates using monoclonal antibodies to human leukocyte antigens. Br J Cancer 49:149

  17. 17.

    Siegiel S (1963) Nonparametric statistic for the behavioral sciences. Mc Graw-Hill, New York

  18. 18.

    Schmitz-Moormann P, Heider HA, Thomas C (1979) Prognosis independent of therapy: In: Herfarth CH, Schlag P (eds) Gastric cancer. Springer Verlag, Berlin, Heidelberg, New York, p 172

  19. 19.

    Sternberger LA, Sternberger NH (1985) Principles of immunochemistry: In: Russo J (ed) Immunochemistry in tumour diagnosis. Martinus Nijhoff Publ, Boston, Dordrecgt, Lancaster, p 12

  20. 20.

    Unanue ER (1983) Antigen-presenting function of the macrophage. Annu Rev Immunol 2:395

  21. 21.

    Uracz W, Mytar B, Zembala M, Ruggiero I, Popiela T, Czupryna A (1982) Activated monocytes in gastric cancer patients. II. Suppressor and cytostatic activity in vitro. J Cancer Res Clin Oncol 104:307

  22. 22.

    Uracz W, Pituch-Noworolska A, Popiela T, Zembala M (1982) The Fc receptors of normal and cancer patients monocytes. Immunobiology 163:450

  23. 23.

    Uracz W, Pituch-Noworolska A, Zembala M, Popiela T, Czupryna A (1982) „Activated” monocytes in gastric cancer patients. I. An increased Fc receptor expression, antibody dependent cellular cytotoxicity and NBT reduction. J Cancer Res Clin Oncol 104:181

  24. 24.

    Whitwell HL, Hughes HPA, Moore M, Ahmed A (1984) Expression of major histocompatibility antigens and leucocyte infiltration in benign and malignant human breast disease. Br J Cancer 49:161

  25. 25.

    Yamamoto K, Kumagai Y, Hiramatsu K, Okumura K, Tada T (1983) I-A homologous antigen on human lymphocytes detected by a monoclonal antibody. Immunogenetics 17:101

  26. 26.

    Zembala M, Uracz W, Ruggiero I, Lemmel EM (1982) Isolation of human monocytes by rosetting with antibody-coated human erythrocytes and isopycnic gradient centrifugation. Clin Exp Immunol 49:225

  27. 27.

    Zembala M, Mytar B, Ruggiero I, Uracz W, Popiela T, Czupryna A (1983) Suppressor cells and survival of patients with advanced gastric cancer. J Natl Cancer Inst 70:223

  28. 28.

    Zembala M, Uracz W, Ruggiero I, Mytar B, Pryjma J (1984) Isolation and functional characteristics of FcR+ and FcR− human monocyte subsets. J Immunol 133:1293

Download references

Author information

Correspondence to Marek Zembala.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Uracz, W., Stachura, J., Pituch-Noworolska, A. et al. The altered expression of MHC-class II determinants on monocytes of cancer patients. Cancer Immunol Immunother 27, 171–176 (1988).

Download citation


  • Cancer Patient
  • Gastric Cancer
  • Colorectal Cancer
  • Gastritis
  • Gastric Mucosa