Anti-idiotypic antibodies bear the internal image of a human tumor antigen

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Science  04 Apr 1986:
Vol. 232, Issue 4746, pp. 100-102
DOI: 10.1126/science.3952496


Goat antibodies to idiotypes (anti-idiotypic antibodies; Ab2) that recognize an idiotype associated with the combining site of a BALB/c mouse IgG2a monoclonal antibody (Ab1) to human gastric carcinoma were used to immunize BALB/c mice and rabbits. A monoclonal anti-anti-idiotypic antibody (Ab3) of IgG1 isotype was obtained after immunization of mice. The Ab3 and the Ab1 showed identical binding specificities and bound with similar avidities to the same tumor antigen. The induction of Ab1-like Ab3 by Ab2 was not restricted to mice, since Ab3 could also be induced in rabbits. Both the mouse- and the rabbit-derived Ab3 bound the same gastrointestinal cancer-associated antigen as Ab1. These findings indicate that Ab2 induced the formation of antigen-specific Ab3, probably because it bears the internal image of the tumor-associated antigen. This Ab2 may therefore have potential for modulating the immune response of cancer patients to their tumors.