Pep-3D-Search: a method for B-cell epitope prediction based on mimotope analysis.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: The prediction of conformational B-cell epitopes is one of the most important goals in immunoinformatics. The solution to this problem, even if approximate, would help in designing experiments to precisely map the residues of interaction between an antigen and an antibody. Consequently, this area of research has received considerable attention from immunologists, structural biologists and computational biologists. Phage-displayed random peptide libraries are powerful tools used to obtain mimotopes that are selected by binding to a given monoclonal antibody (mAb) in a similar way to the native epitope. These mimotopes can be considered as functional epitope mimics. Mimotope analysis based methods can predict not only linear but also conformational epitopes and this has been the focus of much research in recent years. Though some algorithms based on mimotope analysis have been proposed, the precise localization of the interaction site mimicked by the mimotopes is still a challenging task. RESULTS: In this study, we propose a method for B-cell epitope prediction based on mimotope analysis called Pep-3D-Search. Given the 3D structure of an antigen and a set of mimotopes (or a motif sequence derived from the set of mimotopes), Pep-3D-Search can be used in two modes: mimotope or motif. To evaluate the performance of Pep-3D-Search to predict epitopes from a set of mimotopes, 10 epitopes defined by crystallography were compared with the predicted results from a Pep-3D-Search: the average Matthews correlation coefficient (MCC), sensitivity and precision were 0.1758, 0.3642 and 0.6948. Compared with other available prediction algorithms, Pep-3D-Search showed comparable MCC, specificity and precision, and could provide novel, rational results. To verify the capability of Pep-3D-Search to align a motif sequence to a 3D structure for predicting epitopes, 6 test cases were used. The predictive performance of Pep-3D-Search was demonstrated to be superior to that of other similar programs. Furthermore, a set of test cases with different lengths of sequences was constructed to examine Pep-3D-Search's capability in searching sequences on a 3D structure. The experimental results demonstrated the excellent search capability of Pep-3D-Search, especially when the length of the query sequence becomes longer; the iteration numbers of Pep-3D-Search to precisely localize the target paths did not obviously increase. This means that Pep-3D-Search has the potential to quickly localize the epitope regions mimicked by longer mimotopes. CONCLUSION: Our Pep-3D-Search provides a powerful approach for localizing the surface region mimicked by the mimotopes. As a publicly available tool, Pep-3D-Search can be utilized and conveniently evaluated, and it can also be used to complement other existing tools. The data sets and open source code used to obtain the results in this paper are available on-line and as supplementary material. More detailed materials may be accessed at (http://kyc.nenu.edu.cn/Pep3DSearch/).
Project description:BACKGROUND: A B-cell epitope is a group of residues on the surface of an antigen which stimulates humoral responses. Locating these epitopes on antigens is important for the purpose of effective vaccine design. In recent years, mapping affinity-selected peptides screened from a random phage display library to the native epitope has become popular in epitope prediction. These peptides, also known as mimotopes, share the similar structure and function with the corresponding native epitopes. Great effort has been made in using this similarity between such mimotopes and native epitopes in prediction, which has resulted in better outcomes than statistics-based methods can. However, it cannot maintain a high degree of satisfaction in various circumstances. RESULTS: In this study, we propose a new method that maps a group of mimotopes back to a source antigen so as to locate the interacting epitope on the antigen. The core of this method is a searching algorithm that is incorporated with both dynamic programming (DP) and branch and bound (BB) optimization and operated on a series of overlapping patches on the surface of a protein. These patches are then transformed to a number of graphs using an adaptable distance threshold (ADT) regulated by an appropriate compactness factor (CF), a novel parameter proposed in this study. Compared with both Pep-3D-Search and PepSurf, two leading graph-based search tools, on average from the results of 18 test cases, MimoPro, the Web-based implementation of our proposed method, performed better in sensitivity, precision, and Matthews correlation coefficient (MCC) than both did in epitope prediction. In addition, MimoPro is significantly faster than both Pep-3D-Search and PepSurf in processing. CONCLUSIONS: Our search algorithm designed for processing well constructed graphs using an ADT regulated by CF is more sensitive and significantly faster than other graph-based approaches in epitope prediction. MimoPro is a viable alternative to both PepSurf and Pep-3D-Search for epitope prediction in the same kind, and freely accessible through the MimoPro server located at http://informatics.nenu.edu.cn/MimoPro.
Project description:Identification of epitopes which invokes strong humoral responses is an essential issue in the field of immunology. Various computational methods that have been developed based on the antigen structures and the mimotopes these years narrow the search for experimental validation. These methods can be divided into two categories: antigen structure-based methods and mimotope-based methods. Though new methods of the two kinds have been proposed in these years, they cannot maintain a high degree of satisfaction in various circumstances. In this paper, we proposed a new conformational B-cell epitope prediction method based on antigen preprocessing and mimotopes analysis. The method classifies the antigen surface residues into "epitopes" and "nonepitopes" by six epitope propensity scales, removing the "nonepitopes" and using the preprocessed antigen for epitope prediction based on mimotope sequences. The proposed method gives out the mean F score of 0.42 on the testing dataset. When compared with other publicly available servers by using the testing dataset, the new method yields better performance. The results demonstrate the proposed method is competent for the conformational B-cell epitope prediction.
Project description:The one-bead-one-compound (OBOC) combinatorial peptide library is a powerful tool to identify ligand and receptor interactions. Here, we applied the OBOC library technology to identify mimotopes specific to the immunoglobulin E (IgE) epitopes of the major shellfish allergen tropomyosin. OBOC peptide libraries with 8-12 amino acid residues were screened with serum samples from patients with shellfish allergy for IgE mimotopes of tropomyosin. Twenty-five mimotopes were identified from the screening and their binding reactivity to tropomyosin-specific IgE was confirmed by peptide ELISA. These mimotopes could be divided into seven clusters based on sequence homology, and epitope mapping by EpiSearch of the clustered mimotopes was performed to characterize and confirm the validity of mimotopes. Five out of six of the predicted epitopes were found to overlap with previously identified epitopes of tropomyosin. To further confirm the mimicry potential of mimotopes, BALB/c mice were immunized with mimotopes conjugated to keyhole limpet hemocyanin and assayed for their capacity to induce tropomyosin-specific antibodies. BALB/c mice that received mimotope immunization were found to have an elevated level of tropomyosin-specific immunoglobulin G, but not mice that received an irrelevant mimotope. This study pioneers the successful application of the OBOC libraries using whole sera to screen and identify multiple shrimp allergen mimotopes and validates their mimicry potential using in vitro, in vivo, and in silico methods.Cellular & Molecular Immunology advance online publication, 14 september 2015; doi:10.1038/cmi.2015.83.
Project description:Antigen-antibody complexes are central players in an effective immune response. However, finding those interactions relevant to a particular disease state can be arduous. Nonetheless many paths to discovery have been explored since deciphering these interactions can greatly facilitate the development of new diagnostics, therapeutics, and vaccines. In silico B cell epitope mapping approaches have been widely pursued, though success has not been consistent. Antibody mixtures in immune sera have been used as handles for biologically relevant antigens, but these and other experimental approaches have proven resource intensive and time consuming. In addition, these methods are often tailored to individual diseases or a specific proteome, rather than providing a universal platform. Most of these methods are not able to identify the specific antibody's epitopes from unknown antigens, such as un-annotated neo antigens in cancer. Alternatively, a peptide library comprised of sequences unrestricted by naturally-found protein space provides for a universal search for mimotopes of an antibody's epitope. Here we present the utility of such a non-natural random sequence library of 10,000 peptides physically addressed on a microarray for mimotope discovery without sequence information of the specific antigen. The peptide arrays were probed with serum from an antigen-immunized rabbit, or alternatively probed with serum pre-absorbed with the same immunizing antigen. With this positive and negative screening scheme, we identified the library-peptides as the mimotopes of the antigen. The unique library peptides were successfully used to isolate antigen-specific antibodies from complete immune serum. Sequence analysis of these peptides revealed the epitopes in the immunized antigen. We present this method as an inexpensive, efficient method for identifying mimotopes of any antibody's targets. These mimotopes should be useful in defining both components of the antigen-antibody complex.
Project description:Therapeutic monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), targeting tumor antigens, or immune checkpoints, have demonstrated a remarkable anti-tumor effect against various malignancies. However, high costs for mono- or combination therapies, associated with adverse effects or possible development of resistance in some patients, warrant further development and modification to gain more flexibility for this immunotherapy approach. An attractive alternative to passive immunization with therapeutic antibodies might be active immunization with mimotopes (B-cell peptides) representing the mAbs' binding epitopes, to activate the patient's own anti-tumor immune response following immunization. Here, we identified and examined the feasibility of inducing anti-tumor effects in vivo following active immunization with a mimotope of the immune checkpoint programmed cell death 1 (PD1), alone or in combination with a Her-2/neu B-cell peptide vaccine. Overlapping peptides spanning the extracellular domains of human PD1 (hPD1) were used to identify hPD1-derived mimotopes, using the therapeutic mAb Nivolumab as a proof of concept. Additionally, for in vivo evaluation in a tumor mouse model, a mouse PD1 (mPD1)-derived mimotope was identified using an anti-mPD1 mAb with mPD1/mPDL-1 blocking capacity. The identified mimotopes were characterized by in vitro assays, including a reporter cell-based assay, and their anti-tumor effects were evaluated in a syngeneic tumor mouse model stably expressing human Her-2/neu. The identified PD1-derived mimotopes were shown to significantly block the mAbs' capacity in inhibiting the respective PD1/PD-L1 interactions. A significant reduction in tumor growth in vivo was observed following active immunization with the mPD1-derived mimotope, associated with a significant reduction in proliferation and increased apoptotic rates in the tumors. Particularly, combined vaccination with the mPD1-derived mimotope and a multiple B-cell epitope Her-2/neu vaccine potentiated the vaccine's anti-tumor effect. Our results suggest active immunization with mimotopes of immune checkpoint inhibitors either as monotherapy or as combination therapy with tumor-specific vaccines, as a new strategy for cancer treatment.
Project description:Epitope prediction based on random peptide library screening has become a focus as a promising method in immunoinformatics research. Some novel software and web-based servers have been proposed in recent years and have succeeded in given test cases. However, since the number of available mimotopes with the relevant structure of template-target complex is limited, a systematic evaluation of these methods is still absent. In this study, a new benchmark dataset was defined. Using this benchmark dataset and a representative dataset, five examples of the most popular epitope prediction software products which are based on random peptide library screening have been evaluated. Using the benchmark dataset, in no method did performance exceed a 0.42 precision and 0.37 sensitivity, and the MCC scores suggest that the epitope prediction results of these software programs are greater than random prediction about 0.09-0.13; while using the representative dataset, most of the values of these performance measures are slightly improved, but the overall performance is still not satisfactory. Many test cases in the benchmark dataset cannot be applied to these pieces of software due to software limitations. Moreover chances are that these software products are overfitted to the small dataset and will fail in other cases. Therefore finding the correlation between mimotopes and genuine epitope residues is still far from resolved and much larger dataset for mimotope-based epitope prediction is desirable.
Project description:Cross-linking of IgE antibody by specific epitopes on the surface of mast cells is a prerequisite for triggering symptoms of peanut allergy. IgE epitopes are frequently categorized as linear or conformational epitopes. Although linear IgE-binding epitopes of peanut allergens have been defined, little is known about conformational IgE-binding epitopes.To identify clinically relevant conformational IgE epitopes of the two most important peanut allergens, Ara h 2 and Ara h 6, using phage peptide library.A phage 12mer peptide library was screened with allergen-specific IgE from 4 peanut-allergic patients. Binding of the mimotopes to IgE from a total of 29 peanut-allergic subjects was measured by ELISA. The mimotope sequences were mapped on the surface areas of Ara h 2 and Ara h 6 using EpiSearch.Forty-one individual mimotopes were identified that specifically bind anti- Ara h 2/Ara h 6 IgE as well as rabbit anti-Ara h 2 and anti-Ara h 6 IgG. Sequence alignment showed that none of the mimotope sequences match a linear segment of the Ara h 2 or Ara h 6 sequences. EpiSearch analysis showed that all the mimotopes mapped to surface patches of Ara h 2 and Ara h 6. Eight of the mimotopes were recognized by more than 90% of the patients, suggesting immunodominance. Each patient had distinct IgE recognition patterns but the recognition frequency was not correlated to the concentration of peanut specific IgE or to clinical history.The mimotopes identified in this study represent conformational epitopes. Identification of similar surface patches on Ara h 2 and Ara h 6 further underscores the similarities between these two potent allergens.
Project description:A mimotope is an antibody-epitope-mimicking peptide retrieved from a phage display random peptide library. Immunization with antitumor antibody-derived mimotopes is promising for inducing antitumor immunity in hosts. In this study, we isolated linear and constrained mimotopes from HBJ127, a tumor-suppressing anti-CD98 heavy chain mAb, and determined their abilities for induction of antitumor activity equal to that of the parent antibody. We detected elevated levels of antipeptide responses, but failed to detect reactivity against native CD98-expressing HeLa cells in sera of immunized mice. Phage display panning and selection of mimotope-immunized mouse spleen-derived antibody Fab library showed that HeLa cell-reactive Fabs were successfully retrieved from the library. This finding indicates that native antigen-reactive Fab clones represented an undetectable minor population in mimotope-induced antibody repertoire. Functional and structural analysis of retrieved Fab clones revealed that they were almost identical to the parent antibody. From these results, we confirmed that mimotope immunization was promising for retrieving antitumor antibodies equivalent to the parent antibody, although the co-administration of adjuvant compounds such as T-cell epitope peptides and Toll-like receptor 4 agonist peptides is likely to be necessary for inducing stronger antitumor immunity than mimotope injection alone.
Project description:Metuximab is the generic name of Licartin, a new drug for radioimmunotherapy of hepatocellular carcinoma. Although it is known to be a mouse monoclonal antibody against CD147, the complete epitope mediating the binding of metuximab to CD147 remains unknown. We panned the Ph.D.-12 phage display peptide library against metuximab and got six mimotopes. The following bioinformatics analysis based on mimotopes suggested that metuximab recognizes a conformational epitope composed of more than 20 residues. The residues of its epitope may include T28, V30, K36, L38, K57, F74, D77, S78, D79, D80, Q81, G83, S86, N98, Q100, L101, H102, G103, P104, V131, P132, and K191. The homology modeling of metuximab and the docking of CD147 to metuximab were also performed. Based on the top one docking model, the epitope was predicted to contain 28 residues: AGTVFTTV (23-30), I37, D45, E84, V88, EPMGTANIQLH (92-102), VPP (131-133), Q164, and K191. Almost half of the residues predicted on the basis of mimotope analysis also appear in the docking result, indicating that both results are reliable. As the predicted epitopes of metuximab largely overlap with interfaces of CD147-CD147 interactions, a structural mechanism of metuximab is proposed as blocking the formation of CD147 dimer.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Phage display is widely used in basic research such as the exploration of protein-protein interaction sites and networks, and applied research such as the development of new drugs, vaccines, and diagnostics. It has also become a promising method for epitope mapping. Research on new algorithms that assist and automate phage display based epitope mapping has attracted many groups. Most of the existing tools have not been implemented as an online service until now however, making it less convenient for the community to access, utilize, and evaluate them. RESULTS: We present MIMOX, a free web tool that helps to map the native epitope of an antibody based on one or more user supplied mimotopes and the antigen structure. MIMOX was coded in Perl using modules from the Bioperl project. It has two sections. In the first section, MIMOX provides a simple interface for ClustalW to align a set of mimotopes. It also provides a simple statistical method to derive the consensus sequence and embeds JalView as a Java applet to view and manage the alignment. In the second section, MIMOX can map a single mimotope or a consensus sequence of a set of mimotopes, on to the corresponding antigen structure and search for all of the clusters of residues that could represent the native epitope. NACCESS is used to evaluate the surface accessibility of the candidate clusters; and Jmol is embedded to view them interactively in their 3D context. Initial case studies show that MIMOX can reproduce mappings from existing tools such as FINDMAP and 3DEX, as well as providing novel, rational results. CONCLUSION: A web-based tool called MIMOX has been developed for phage display based epitope mapping. As a publicly available online service in this area, it is convenient for the community to access, utilize, and evaluate, complementing other existing programs. MIMOX is freely available at http://web.kuicr.kyoto-u.ac.jp/~hjian/mimox.