Vaccine Development – Epitope Identification with NeoScreen®
Immunitrack’s unique NeoScreen® is a leading platform technology that facilitates accurate and high-throughput studies of MHC interactions with epitopes of interest. The platform contributes to increasing the safety and efficacy of new vaccines by yielding reliable immunogenicity data that can be used for early assessment of epitopes during vaccine development.
Epitope identification brief overview. 1. Partner or client approaches Immunitrack with identity of target antigen (pathogen, genome or peptide sequence). 2. Immunitrack compiles a list of epitopes to be tested. 3. Affinity and stability of newly synthesised epitopes for MHC panel is tested on NeoScreen® platform. 4. Client/partner advances immunogenetic epitopes for vaccine development.
Better Vaccines with CD4 and CD8-Stimulating Epitopes
When a pathogen, e.g., bacteria, virus or parasite, infects human cells, epitopes from any of that pathogen’s proteins can theoretically be bound and presented by MHC I receptors on host cell surfaces, leading to stimulation of CD4 and CD8 T cells to provoke antibody-mediated and cellular immune responses.
At Immunitrack, we believe that the key to developing powerful vaccines is to combine epitopes that stimulate an antibody response with epitopes that stimulate a cellular response. However, finding out which epitopes lead to highly effective immune responses and are thus worth pursuing for vaccine development is a challenge.
How Can Immunitrack’s NeoScreen® Help?
The majority of T cell epitopes used in vaccine development are identified through in silico prediction platforms that typically incorporate multiple aspects of MHC class-specific affinity. Although widely used, affinity measurements alone may yield false positive predictions, because for any epitope to be truly immunogenic, it must be able to bind a compatible MHC molecule and remain bound for long enough to be presented to and recognised by T cells to elicit an immune response (1-5).
Our NeoScreen® immunogenicity prediction platform combines affinity and stability assays to eliminate the false positives that may arise when conducting affinity assays alone. Identifying such false positives early during vaccine development enables optimisation to include immunogenic epitopes, ultimately leading to vaccines with greater efficacy.