Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) vaccine candidates were previously constructed as a string of cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) epitopes delivered and expressed using DNA and modified virus Ankara (MVA; an attenuated vaccinia virus) vectors. These vaccines were shown to induce interferon (IFN)-gamma-producing and cytolytic CD8+ T cells after a single vaccine administration. In the course of this work, immunization protocols were sought which would improve the levels of induced HIV-specific T cells. It was found that previous immunological exposure to MVA reduced the efficiency of subsequent priming and boosting using the same vaccine vehicle. However, a combined regime whereby the animals were first primed with the DNA vaccine and then boosted with MVA was the most potent protocol for the induction of both interferon-gamma-producing and cytolytic T cells against two CTL epitopes simultaneously. The general applicability of this novel vaccination method for induction of major histocompatibility complex class I-restricted T cells is discussed.