Enhancement of Capsid Gene Expression: Preparing the Human Papillomavirus Type 16 Major Structural Gene L1 for DNA Vaccination Purposes.

Publikation: Beiträge in ZeitschriftenZeitschriftenaufsätzeForschungbegutachtet


  • Christoph Leder
  • Jürgen A. Kleinschmidt
  • Carsten Wiethe
  • Martin Müller

Expression of the structural proteins L1 and L2 of the human papillomaviruses (HPV) is tightly regulated. As a consequence, attempts to express these prime-candidate genes for prophylactic vaccination against papillomavirus-associated diseases in mammalian cells by means of simple DNA transfections result in insufficient production of the viral antigens. Similarly, in vivo DNA vaccination using HPV L1 or L2 expression constructs produces only weak immune responses. In this study we demonstrate that transient expression of the HPV type 16 L1 and L2 proteins can be highly improved by changing the RNA coding sequence, resulting in the accumulation of significant amounts of virus-like particles in the nuclei of transfected cells. Data presented indicate that, in the case of L1, adaptation for codon usage accounts for the vast majority of the improvement in protein expression, whereas translation-independent posttranscriptional events contribute only to a minor degree. Finally, the adapted L1 genes demonstrate strongly increased immunogenicity in vivo compared to that of unmodified L1 genes.

ZeitschriftJournal of Virology
Seiten (von - bis)9201-9209
Anzahl der Seiten9
PublikationsstatusErschienen - 01.10.2001