Synthetic vaccine for the treatment of lesions caused by high risk human papilloma virus

Cancer J. Sep-Oct 2011;17(5):300-1. doi: 10.1097/PPO.0b013e318235e0fe.


Until recently, therapeutic cancer vaccines only sporadically led to long-term clinical responses. We here report on a novel vaccine modality, characterized by the administration of long (23-45 amino acids) synthetic peptides in incomplete Freund adjuvant (mineral oil-based, Montanide ISA-51), delivered subcutaneously. Such vaccines were first demonstrated to be much more potent in preclinical T-cell response induction and tumor therapy experiments than short major histocompatibility complex class I-binding peptides that have been used extensively in the clinic. A long-peptide vaccine consisting of 13 overlapping peptides, together covering the entire length of the 2 oncogenic proteins E6 and E7 of high-risk human papilloma virus type 16 (HPV16), caused complete regression of all lesions and eradication of virus in 9 of 20 women with high-grade vulvar intraepithelial neoplasia. The nature and strength of the vaccine-induced T-cell response were significantly correlated with the clinical response. This vaccine promises to be of use, not only in patients with premalignant lesions caused by high-risk HPV16, but also in patients with malignant tumors caused by this virus, including HPV16-positive cervical cancer, anal cancer, and head and neck cancer.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cervical Intraepithelial Neoplasia / therapy
  • Cervical Intraepithelial Neoplasia / virology
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Oncogene Proteins, Viral / immunology
  • Papillomavirus E7 Proteins / immunology
  • Papillomavirus Infections / immunology*
  • Papillomavirus Infections / pathology
  • Papillomavirus Infections / therapy*
  • Papillomavirus Vaccines / immunology
  • Papillomavirus Vaccines / therapeutic use*
  • Repressor Proteins / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / therapy
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / virology
  • Vaccines, Synthetic / immunology*
  • Vaccines, Synthetic / therapeutic use


  • E6 protein, Human papillomavirus type 16
  • Oncogene Proteins, Viral
  • Papillomavirus E7 Proteins
  • Papillomavirus Vaccines
  • Repressor Proteins
  • Vaccines, Synthetic
  • oncogene protein E7, Human papillomavirus type 16