Induction of a cytotoxic T-cell response to HIV-1 proteins with short synthetic peptides and human compatible adjuvants

Vaccine. 2001 Jul 20;19(30):4121-9. doi: 10.1016/s0264-410x(01)00179-7.


The goal of this study was the induction of a strong CTL response against multiple CTL epitopes present in HIV proteins using short synthetic peptides. Four HLA-A2.1 restricted peptides (RT 476-484, p17 77-85, gp41 814-823, RT 956-964) that showed stable binding to the HLA-A2.1 molecule in an in vitro binding assay were able to elicit a strong specific immune response in HLA-A2.1 transgenic mice when injected with IFA or Montanide. The use of biodegradable microspheres (MS) as adjuvant was also successfully tested for all peptides. When the peptides were injected as a mixture the response was weaker as compared to individual injections of the peptides indicating the occurrence of immunodominance (ID). We are currently investigating whether ID can be overcome by a combined injection of peptide loaded MS with different release patterns. Taken together, it seems feasible to induce a specific CTL response in HLA-A2.1 transgenic mice against several HIV proteins using short synthetic peptides and human compatible adjuvants.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • AIDS Vaccines / immunology*
  • Adjuvants, Immunologic / administration & dosage*
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Cell Line
  • Female
  • HIV-1 / immunology*
  • HLA-A2 Antigen / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Immunization
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • Microspheres
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Peptide Fragments / immunology*
  • T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic / immunology*


  • AIDS Vaccines
  • Adjuvants, Immunologic
  • HLA-A2 Antigen
  • Peptide Fragments