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Immunodominant epitopes identified for designing peptide-based vaccine against SARS-CoV-2

Date:
June 10, 2020
Source:
Bar-Ilan University
Summary:
Researchers have identified a set of potential immunodominant epitopes from the SARS-CoV-2 proteome. These epitopes are capable of generating both antibody- and cell-mediated immune responses. The findings of this work may thus contribute to developing a peptide vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 infections which can stop the COVID-19 outbreak and future pandemics caused by coronaviruses.
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There are currently no licensed vaccines available for COVID-19. While several antiviral drugs have been tested, none has proved to be completely effective against the disease. In a study just published in the journal MDPI Vaccines, researchers from Bar-Ilan University have identified a set of potential immunodominant epitopes from the SARS-CoV-2 proteome. These epitopes are capable of generating both antibody- and cell-mediated immune responses. The findings of this work may thus contribute to developing a peptide vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 infections which can stop the COVID-19 outbreak and future pandemics caused by coronaviruses.

Led by Dr. Milana Frenkel-Morgenstern, Head of the Cancer Genomics and BioComputing of Complex Diseases Lab at Bar-Ilan University's Azrieli Faculty of Medicine, the researchers took an immunoinformatics-based computational approach to mine the protein content of SARS-CoV-2 and subsequently identified immunodominant epitopes of the virus. Immune responses that are based on specific immunodominant epitopes involve the generation of both antibody- and cell-mediated immunity against pathogens presenting such epitopes. Such immunity can facilitate fast and effective elimination of the pathogen.

The team of researchers that also includes Sumit Mukherjee, Dmitry Tworowski, Rajesh Detroja and Sunanda Biswas Mukherjee, identified 15 potential immunogenic regions from three proteins of SARS-CoV-2, and mapped 25 immunodominant epitopes on other SARS-CoV-2 proteins. To confirm that these epitopes could serve to provide immunity to a global population, the percentage of individuals that express a major histocompatibility complex (MHC) capable of recognizing any of these epitopes was determined. Accordingly, seven epitopes were deemed to be present in more than 87% of the worldwide virus-affected population. Further structural molecular docking analyses estimated the binding interaction of these potential epitopes with human MHC. Complete lists of MHC proteins that recognize each epitope have been generated and are presented in both the submitted manuscript and a provisional US patent application (US 63/034.416).

The seven epitopes were tested using multiple tools to verify their non-allergenic and non-toxic natures, as well as to demonstrate that they carry a low risk of triggering any autoimmune responses. Together, such results indicate that these seven epitopes represent potentially effective vaccine candidates. Indeed, the development of vaccines using these immunodominant epitopes could activate both humoral and cellular immune responses in humans comprising a major fraction of the world's population.


Story Source:

Materials provided by Bar-Ilan University. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Sumit Mukherjee, Dmitry Tworowski, Rajesh Detroja, Sunanda Biswas Mukherjee, Milana Frenkel-Morgenstern. Immunoinformatics and Structural Analysis for Identification of Immunodominant Epitopes in SARS-CoV-2 as Potential Vaccine Targets. Vaccines, 2020; 8 (2): 290 DOI: 10.3390/vaccines8020290

Cite This Page:

Bar-Ilan University. "Immunodominant epitopes identified for designing peptide-based vaccine against SARS-CoV-2." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 June 2020. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/06/200610112101.htm>.
Bar-Ilan University. (2020, June 10). Immunodominant epitopes identified for designing peptide-based vaccine against SARS-CoV-2. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 25, 2024 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/06/200610112101.htm
Bar-Ilan University. "Immunodominant epitopes identified for designing peptide-based vaccine against SARS-CoV-2." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/06/200610112101.htm (accessed February 25, 2024).

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