InducTION of mage-A3 and HPV-16 immunity by Trojan vaccines in patients with head and neck carcinoma

Caroline J. Voskens, Duane Sewell, Ronna Hertzano, Jennifer Desanto, Sandra Rollins, Myounghee Lee, Rodney Taylor, Jeffrey Wolf, Mohan Suntharalingam, Brian Gastman, John C. Papadimitriou, Changwan Lu, Ming Tan, Robert Morales, Kevin Cullen, Esteban Celis, Dean Mann, Scott E. Strome

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


Background We performed a pilot study using Trojan vaccines in patients with advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (SCCHN). These vaccines are composed of HLA-I and HLA-II restricted melanoma antigen E (MAGE)-A3 or human papillomavirus (HPV)-16 derived peptides, joined by furin-cleavable linkers, and linked to a "penetrin" peptide sequence derived from HIV-TAT. Thirty-one patients with SCCHN were screened for the trial and 5 were enrolled. Methods Enrolled patients were treated with 300 μg of Trojan peptide supplemented with Montanide and granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) at 4-week intervals for up to 4 injections. Results Following vaccination, peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) from 4 of 5 patients recognized both the full Trojan constructs and constituent HLA-II peptides, whereas responses to HLA-I restricted peptides were less pronounced. Conclusion This treatment regimen seems to have acceptable toxicity and elicits measurable systemic immune responses against HLA-II restricted epitopes in a subset of patients with advanced SCCHN. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Head Neck, 2012

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1734-1746
Number of pages13
JournalHead and Neck
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • HLA-I
  • HLA-II
  • immune response
  • vaccine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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