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Cancer Res. 2002 Jul 1;62(13):3654-8.

Plant-derived human papillomavirus 16 E7 oncoprotein induces immune response and specific tumor protection.

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  • 1Ente per le Nuove Tecnologie, Energia e Ambiente, UTS Biotech, Sezione Genetica e Genomica Vegetale, CR Casaccia, Rome, Italy.


Vaccine strategies for treatment of human papillomavirus-induced cervical cancer are based on either the recombinant E7 fusion oncoprotein or E7 CTL peptides. The therapeutic potential of the E7-based vaccine depends on the use of different adjuvants. In this study, we describe for the first time the expression of the human papillomavirus 16 E7 protein in Nicotiana benthamiana plant using a potato virus X-derived vector. C57BL/6 mice immunized with E7-containing crude foliar extracts developed both humoral and cell-mediated immune responses and were protected from tumor development after challenge with the E7-expressing C3 tumoral cell line. Our data support the possibility of producing a cost-effective anticancer vaccine in plant with intrinsic adjuvant-like properties.

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