Immunoinformatics-Based Proteome Mining to Develop a Next-Generation Vaccine Design against Borrelia burgdorferi: The Cause of Lyme Borreliosis

Kashaf Khalid, Omar Ahsan, Tanwir Khaliq, Khalid Muhammad, Yasir Waheed

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The tick-borne bacterium, Borrelia burgdorferi has been implicated in Lyme disease—a deadly infection, formerly confined to North America, but currently widespread across Europe and Asia. Despite the severity of this disease, there is still no human Lyme disease vaccine available. A reliable immunoinformatic approach is urgently needed for designing a therapeutic vaccine against this Gram-negative pathogen. Through this research, we explored the immunodominant proteins of B. burgdorferi and developed a novel and reliable vaccine design with great immunological predictability as well as low contamination and autoimmunity risks. Our initial analysis involved proteome-wide analysis to filter out proteins on the basis of their redundancy, homology to humans, virulence, immunogenicity, and size. Following the selection of proteins, immunoinformatic tools were employed to identify MHC class I & II epitopes and B-cell epitopes, which were subsequently subjected to a rigorous screening procedure. In the final formulation, ten common MHC-I and II epitopes were used together with a suitable adjuvant. We predicted that the final chimeric multi-epitope vaccine could invoke B-cell responses and IFN-gamma-mediated immunity as well as being stable and non-allergenic. The dynamics simulations predicted the stable folding of the designed molecule, after which the molecular docking predicted the stability of the interaction between the potential antigenic epitopes and human immune receptors. Our studies have shown that the designed next-generation vaccine stimulates desirable immune responses, thus potentially providing a viable way to prevent Lyme disease. Nevertheless, further experimental studies in a wet lab are needed in order to validate the results.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1239
JournalVaccines
Volume10
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022

Keywords

  • Borrelia burgdorferi
  • Lyme borreliosis
  • molecular docking
  • molecular dynamics simulations
  • next-generation vaccine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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