Y-box-binding proteins are members of the human cold-shock domain protein superfamily, which includes dbpA, dbpB/YB-1, and dbpC/contrin. dbpC/contrin is a germ cell-specific Y-box-binding protein and is suggested to function as a nuclear transcription factor and RNA-binding protein in the cytoplasm. Whereas ubiquitous dbpB/YB-1 expression has been well studied in various types of human carcinomas as a prognostic or predictive marker, the dbpC/contrin expression in human tumour cells has not been reported. In this report, we provide the first evidence showing that dbpC was highly expressed in human testicular seminoma and ovarian dysgerminomas, and in carcinomas in other tissues and that its expression in normal tissues is nearly restricted to germ cells and placental trophoblasts. These results indicate that dbpC/contrin would be a potentially novel cancer/testis antigen.
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