In Silico Prediction of Linear B-Cell Epitopes on Proteins
Antibody-protein interactions play a critical role in the humoral immune response. B-cells secrete antibodies, which bind antigens (e.g., cell surface proteins of pathogens). The specific parts of antigens that are recognized by antibodies are called B-cell epitopes. These epitopes can be linear, corresponding to a contiguous amino acid sequence fragment of an antigen, or conformational, in which residues critical for recognition may not be contiguous in the primary sequence, but are in close proximity within the folded protein 3D structure.
Identification of B-cell epitopes in target antigens is one of the key steps in epitope-driven subunit vaccine design, immunodiagnostic tests, and antibody production. In silico bioinformatics techniques offer a promising and cost-effective approach for identifying potential B-cell epitopes in a target vaccine candidate. In this chapter, we show how to utilize online B-cell epitope prediction tools to identify linear B-cell epitopes from the primary amino acid sequence of proteins.
Key wordsAntibody-protein interaction B-cell epitope prediction Linear B-cell epitope prediction Epitope mapping Epitope prediction
This work was supported by NIH grant GM066387 to VGH and DD, by Edward Frymoyer Chair of Information Sciences and Technology at Pennsylvania State University to VGH, and by a Presidential Initiative for Interdisciplinary Research (PIIR) award from Iowa State University to DD.
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