Studies on in vivo induction of cytotoxic T lymphocyte responses by synthetic peptides from E6 and E7 oncoproteins of human papillomavirus type 16

Viral Immunol. 1995;8(3):165-74. doi: 10.1089/vim.1995.8.165.


Induction of cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) responses is an important defense mechanism against infectious agents, specifically viruses. In the present investigation we employed a mouse assay system we previously developed, for rapid induction of CTLs by synthetic peptides from E6 and E7 oncoproteins of human papillomavirus type 16 (HPV-16). In particular, we compared the efficiency of CTL induction by HPV-16 peptides synthesized as linear monomers with those containing a dipalmitoyl-lysine-glycine-glycine (P2-KGG) moiety at the amino-terminus. Our results identified a 15-amino-acid peptide from E6(Q15L, aa 43-57) to be capable of inducing CTLs in vivo and addition of the lipid tail significantly increased CTL induction over that seen with the linear form of the peptide. Further, we identified a shorter peptide, V1OC, with 9 of 10 amino acids overlapping with Q15L peptide (aa 49-58) to be capable of inducing CTLs against both V1OC and Q15L. In case of E7 protein, our results demonstrated usefulness of P2-KGG moiety for enhanced CTL induction by previously identified CTL epitope peptides Q19D (aa 44-62) and R9F (aa 49-57). CTLs induced by both the E6 and E7 peptides were MHC class I-restricted and exhibited strict allele specificity and CD8+ phenotype. Our results showing enhanced cell-mediated immune responses with lipid-tailed forms of peptides add strength to the concept of a synthetic peptide-based vaccine for prophylaxis and therapy of HPV-associated cervical cancer.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Cytotoxicity, Immunologic / drug effects*
  • Lymphocyte Activation / drug effects*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Oncogene Proteins, Viral / immunology*
  • Papillomaviridae / immunology*
  • Papillomavirus E7 Proteins
  • Peptides / chemical synthesis
  • Peptides / immunology*
  • Peptides / pharmacology*
  • Repressor Proteins*
  • T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic / immunology*


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