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A commonly used monoclonal antibody targeting osteoprotegerin (OPG), MAB8051, detects a truncated protein species in breast and prostate cancer cell lysates. OPG expression has been reported to contribute to cell survival of both of these cancers. We hypothesised that the truncated protein represented a unique tumour-associated OPG isoform. However, here we show that the truncated protein identified by MAB8051 in cancer cell lines is carbonic anhydrase II (CA II), also implicated in tumour biology. We clearly demonstrate cross-reactivity of this OPG antibody in western blots. OPG and CA II RNA-interference studies confirmed the identity of the bands. We show almost identical staining patterns between MAB8051 and CA II immunohistochemistry of different human tissue types and human tumour types using serial sections. We conclude that care should be exercised using this antibody for immunohistochemistry studies, without additional in situ hybridisation, or parallel use of other OPG-specific antibodies.

Original publication




Journal article


Int J Cancer

Publication Date





1958 - 1966


Amino Acid Sequence, Antibodies, Monoclonal, Carbonic Anhydrase II, Cell Line, Tumor, Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic, Humans, Immunohistochemistry, Molecular Sequence Data, Molecular Weight, Neoplasms, Osteoprotegerin, Protein Processing, Post-Translational, RNA, Messenger, RNA, Small Interfering