Encephalitis, Tick-Borne; Epitope Mapping; Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte; Flavivirus Infections; Immunodominant Epitopes; Yellow Fever Vaccine; Yellow fever virus
Our main research focus is to understand the mechanisms of protective immunity against human-pathogenic viruses. We study the virus-specific immune responses with a special emphasis on the fine-specificities of CD4 T helper cells that recognize epitopes in the viral structural proteins and thus can provide direct help to B cells producing neutralizing and protective antibodies. Based on the known crystallographic structures of viral proteins, immunodominant regions of T cell epitopes have been mapped to specific structural domains in the context of human infections as well as vaccination with different flavivirus vaccines. The results will provide insights into incompletely understood aspects of human T cell responses that contribute to protective immunity against emerging virus pathogens.
Techniques, methods & infrastructure
CD4 T cell epitope mapping, analyses of immunodominant epitopes in the context of the three-dimensional structures of virus proteins, class II allele-specific affinity predictions and informatics-based approaches as well as in vitro T cell activation assays using structurally defined antigen preparations.
- Immunodominance of flavivirus CD4 T cell responses (16)
Source of Funding: FWF (Austrian Science Fund), Stand alone project (2016-2021)
- Koblischke, M, et al. 2020. CD4 T cell determinants in West Nile virus disease and asymptomatic infection. Frontiers in Immunolgy 2020, doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2020.00016.
- Koblischke, M, et al. 2018. Structural influence on the dominance of virus-specific CD4 T cell epitopes in Zika virus infection. Frontiers in Immunolgy 2018, doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2018.01196
- Koblischke, M. et al., 2017. Protein structure shapes immunodominance in the CD4 T cell response to yellow fever vaccination. Scientific Reports, 7(1). Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-0
- Aberle JH, et al. 2015. Human CD4+ T Helper Cell Responses after Tick-Borne Encephalitis Vaccination and Infection. PLoS One 10(10): e0140545. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0140545
- Malafa S et al., 2020. Impact of flavivirus vaccine-induced immunity on primary Zika virus antibody response in humans. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2020. doi: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0008034