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Hum Immunol. 2006 Jul;67(7):512-20. Epub 2006 May 4.

Identification of vaccinia CD8+ T-cell epitopes conserved among vaccinia and variola viruses restricted by common MHC class I molecules, HLA-A2 or HLA-B7.

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  • 1Center for Infectious Disease and Vaccine Research, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA, 01655, USA.


Immunization with vaccinia virus results in long-lasting protection against smallpox and is an approach that has been successfully used to eliminate natural smallpox infections worldwide. Today, vaccinia virus is very important not only as a vaccine virus to protect human against smallpox, but also as an expression vector for immunization against other infectious diseases, such as HIV and cancer. In this article, we identify three new vaccinia human CD8+ T-cell epitopes conserved among vaccinia and variola viruses restricted by HLA-A2, HLA-B7, or HLA-B*3502, which belongs to the HLA-B7 supertype. Identification of these CD8+ T-cell epitopes restricted by common HLA alleles will help to quantitate human CD8+ T-cell responses to licensed and experimental smallpox vaccines and to vaccinia virus vectors. CD8+ T-cell responses specific to these epitopes can also be used to quantitate cellular immune responses, especially with new smallpox vaccines that do not induce a "take," such as the modified vaccinia virus Ankara strain. Combined with previous reports by us and others, these results show that there are some vaccinia viral proteins containing multiple epitopes restricted by different MHC molecules of humans and mice.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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