T-cell epitope prediction by sequence-based methods and molecular docking of proteins from Boophilus microplus

Authors: I. Dimitrov, I. Doytchinova, M. Atanasova,


Ticks are blood-sucking parasites that feed on variety of domestic animals. Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus is a hard tick found in tropical and subtropical regions and feeds on cattle. The development of vaccine is very important in order to save the livestock. Threeglycosylphosphatidylinisotol(GPI)-anchored proteins (Contig2828, Contig7420, and CK181624) from the gut of B. microplus were selected by VaxiJen server as highly immunogenic. As the proteins will be tested further on BalbC mice (haplotype d), the T-cell epitope predictions were performed on mouse major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II proteins IAd and IEd. The predictions were made by three sequence-based methods implemented in the servers MHCPred, NetMHCII and RANKPEP and by one structure-based method – molecular docking. Based on the consensus prediction by the sequence- and structure-based methods, the peptides 1-14, 31-47 and 49-67 from Contig2828, peptides 6-32 and 75-101 for Contig7420, peptides 1-26 and 45-67 for CK181624 were selected for further experimental studies.

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