This tool can be used to assess the immunogenicity potential of peptides from a target protein as an aid to vaccine design or the assessment of the safety or efficacy of a biologic therapeutic.
Prediction of conformational B-cell epitopes is a significant challenge, particularly when only sequence information is available. However, the selection of linear epitopes from sequence has been established using a number of methods based on the evaluation of amino acid properties. The tool here uses several that are in widespread use in a consensus approach - and can be used to select peptide sequences (linear antigens) that can be used to generate an antibody response to the whole, native protein.
Similarly, prediction of peptides that can generate a T-cell response is challenging - not all peptides from a protein will bind MHC, and not all of those will go on to stimulate a T-cell response after presentation. The use of an in silico assessment can help guide lead selection, engineering & optimisation, and subsequent in vitro studies of immunogenicity.