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"The residue modified by the mutation is italicized.

"The gag gene of an Intracisternal A particle (IAP) is activated by transposition of the IAP.

°The peptide derives from the env gene product of MuLV that appears to be transcribed in several tumors.

"Peptide selected from the ras sequence and used to stimulate CTLs in vitro.

eThe mutation affects the HLA-A2 gene itself.

"The residue modified by the mutation is italicized.

"The gag gene of an Intracisternal A particle (IAP) is activated by transposition of the IAP.

°The peptide derives from the env gene product of MuLV that appears to be transcribed in several tumors.

"Peptide selected from the ras sequence and used to stimulate CTLs in vitro.

eThe mutation affects the HLA-A2 gene itself.

First, knowledge of the molecular nature of these antigens allows the selection of patients whose tumor actually expresses a given antigen. Secondly, it allows the rational design of highly specific vaccine preparations. These could consist of peptides mixed with appropriate adjuvants or used to pulse autologous antigen-presenting cells ex vivo. The availability of the genes encoding the antigens also allows the preparation of recombinant proteins that can be combined with adjuvants, the preparation of recombinant viral vectors that can be used for immunization, or the direct use of these genes in nucleic acid vaccination protocols. Thirdly, precise knowledge of the antigenic epitopes allows careful monitoring of the CTL response after vaccination. This should help to optimize the immunization procedure.

Since a number of tumors express several antigens, patients bearing these tumors could be immunized simultaneously against distinct defined antigens. In addition to being more effective at rejecting the tumor cells, this should reduce the emergence of escaping variants arising by loss of antigen expression, as it is unlikely that the same variant would simultaneously lose distinct nominal antigens.

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