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High-risk human papillomavirus (HPV) infections have been associated with the development of cervical cancer. HPV16 is the most dominant high-risk types of HPV worldwide. L1 and L2 are the major and minor capsid proteins of HPV, respectively. Both proteins are able to self-assemble as a virus-like particle (VLP). In the current study, the human embryonic kidney cells were transfected with the plasmid DNA encoding HPV 16 L1 or L1-L2 genes and their expression was compared using different transfection reagents. Our data showed that the recombinant L1-L2 DNAs were expressed in a high efficiency compared to L1 DNAs as detected by western blotting, fluorescent microscopy, and flow cytometry. In addition, Lipofectamine and Turbofect as the transfection reagents conferred more potent delivery than PEI 25 kDa indicating high toxicity of this system on HEK-293 cells. These results suggest the use of the full length of L2 as an efficient agent for overcoming the cell barriers and poor uptake of DNA in vitro and in vivo. The high expression of HPV16 L1-L2 in HEK-293 cells using different delivery systems opens the way for new studies concerning to the use of L2 for DNA delivery via covalent linkage with the gene of interest (Fig. 5, Ref. 20).


A Namvar, A Bolhassani, M Hashemi. HPV16 L2 improves HPV16 L1 gene delivery as an important approach for vaccine design against cervical cancer. Bratislavské lekárske listy. 2016;117(3):179-84

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PMID: 26925750

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