Throughout the process of carcinogenesis, autologous cells are transformed into cancer cells, leading to changes in their protein expression profiles. It has been suggested that mutations, protein misfolding, overexpression and aberrant post-translational modifications, changes in protein abundance or location can render tumour-associated antigens immunogenic. Subsequent changes in the tumour microenvironment may lead to humoral immune responses and therefore the production of tumour-associated autoantibodies. Hence, autoantibodies are suggested to be immunological biomarkers of aberrant cellular mechanisms occurring throughout tumourigenesis. Since autoantibodies represent a stable and amplified signature of the anti-tumour immune response that may be generated prior to the clinical detection of other tumour proteins and prior to the first clinically detectable signs of the cancer or its recurrence, there is great interest in using autoantibodies as diagnostic and prognostic blood-based biomarkers. In this review, we discuss the current evidence supporting the prognostic value of autoantibodies in a highly immunogenic cancer such as melanoma as well as breast, lung, colon, prostate and stomach cancer, the most commonly diagnosed cancers globally in 2020.
Copyright © 2022. Published by Elsevier B.V.