Histologic and immunofluorescence studies of the kidneys of mice bearing a progressive melanoma show a proliferative glomerulonephritis associated with immune complex deposition in the mesangium and along the glomerular basement membrane This immune complex disease is distinct from the age-associated disease of the C57BL/6J host strain and the complexes can be shown to consist of soluble tumor antigen and antitumor antibody. Furthermore, the intensity of IgG complex deposition correlates directly with tumor progress (size and metastases) and inversely with mononuclear leukocyte infiltration of the tumor. In vitro assays for lymphocyte cytotoxicity and humoral antibody were found to be less reliable indicators of tumor progress. The possible role of circulating soluble tumor antigen in modifying the immune response to tumors is discussed.

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