Protective immunity with an E1 multivalent epitope DNA vaccine against cottontail rabbit papillomavirus (CRPV) infection in an HLA-A2.1 transgenic rabbit model

Jiafen Hu, Nancy Cladel, Xuwen Peng, Karla Balogh, Neil Christensen

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Cottontail rabbit papillomavirus (CRPV)/rabbit model is widely used to study pathogenesis of papillomavirus infections and malignant tumor progression. Recently, we established HLA-A2.1 transgenic rabbit lines and demonstrated efficacy for the testing of immunogenicity of a well-known A2-resticted epitope (HPV16E7/82-90) [Hu J, Peng X, Schell TD, Budgeon LR, Cladel NM, Christensen ND. An HLA-A2.1-transgenic rabbit model to study immunity to papillomavirus infection. J Immunol 2006;177(11):8037-45]. In the present study, we screened five HLA-A2.1 restricted epitopes from CRPVE1 (selected using online MHCI epitope prediction software) and constructed a multivalent epitope DNA vaccine (CRPVE1ep1-5). CRPVE1ep1-5 and a control DNA vaccine (Ub3) were then delivered intracutaneously onto normal and HLA-A2.1 transgenic rabbits, respectively, by a helium-driven gene-gun delivery system. One, two or three immunizations were given to different groups of animals from both New Zealand White outbred and EIII/JC inbred genetic background. Two and three immunizations with CRPVE1ep1-5 DNA vaccine provided complete protection against viral DNA infection of HLA-A2.1 transgenic rabbits from both genetic backgrounds but not in the control-vaccinated groups. One immunization, however, failed to protect HLA-A2.1 transgenic rabbits against viral DNA infection. This study further demonstrated that the HLA-A2.1 transgenic rabbits can be used to test the immunogenicity of HLA-A2.1 restricted epitopes identified by MHCI epitope predication software.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)809-816
Number of pages8
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Feb 6 2008


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology
  • Microbiology
  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • veterinary(all)

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