gens or radiation. However, antigens of this category-were also found on spontaneous mouse tumors and on human tumors. Although their tumor specificity-is optimal, the fact that these antigens are often individually unique prevents their use as components of generic cancer vaccines.

Viral antigens

Antigens derived from oncogenic viruses constitute another category of potentially useful tumor antigens. A number of viral antigens have been studied in detail on virally induced mouse tumors and shown to be relevant for tumor rejection. In humans, the best example is oncoprotein E7 of human papillomavirus 16 (HPV-16), which is present in most cervical carcinomas. Peptides derived from this protein and selected for their high binding affinity to HLA-A2 were used to stimulate CDS lymphocytes from normal individuals. CTL clones obtained against three of these peptides were found to recognize not only peptide-pulsed cells but also a cervical carcinoma line expressing HLA-A2 and HPV-16 E7, demonstrating that these peptides indeed correspond to genuine cervical carcinoma antigens.

Clinical perspectives

The next few years will see the evaluation of new clinical trials using some of these defined tumor antigens. Progress at three different levels is anticipated.

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