A carcinoembryonic antigen polynucleotide vaccine has in vivo antitumor activity

Gene Ther. 1995 Jan;2(1):59-65.


We have constructed a plasmid DNA encoding the full-length cDNA for human carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) driven by the cytomegalovirus early promoter/enhancer and demonstrated that this plasmid can function as a polynucleotide vaccine. The immune response elicited by the CEA polynucleotide vaccine is dose and schedule dependent. There appears to be a threshold dose of 50 micrograms capable of inducing CEA-specific lymphoblastic transformation, lymphokine release, and antibody response. Doses of 10 micrograms were significantly less effective. When 50-micrograms doses are employed, thrice weekly or weekly vaccination schedules more reliably elicit CEA-specific immune responses by day 43 than does an every-3-weeks schedule. Furthermore the CEA polynucleotide vaccine can immunoprotect against challenge with syngeneic CEA-transduced colon carcinoma cells as early as 3 weeks after the first vaccination. Studies are ongoing to demonstrate the ability of CEA polynucleotide vaccination to treat pre-existing syngeneic mouse colon and breast carcinomas expressing human CEA.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Neoplasm / biosynthesis
  • Carcinoembryonic Antigen / genetics*
  • Carcinoembryonic Antigen / immunology*
  • Colonic Neoplasms / immunology
  • Colonic Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Gene Expression
  • Genetic Therapy / methods*
  • Interleukins / metabolism
  • Lymphocyte Activation
  • Mice
  • Plasmids*
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured
  • Vaccines, Synthetic / administration & dosage
  • Vaccines, Synthetic / genetics
  • Vaccines, Synthetic / immunology*


  • Antibodies, Neoplasm
  • Carcinoembryonic Antigen
  • Interleukins
  • Vaccines, Synthetic