Dynamics behind affinity maturation of an anti-HCMV antibody family influencing antigen binding

Francesco Di Palma, Anna Tramontano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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The investigation of antibody affinity maturation and its effects on antigen binding is important with respect to understanding the regulation of the immune response. To shed light on this crucial process, we analyzed two Igs neutralizing the human cytomegalovirus: the primary germline antibody M2J1 and its related mature antibody 8F9. Both antibodies target the AD-2S1 epitope of the gB envelope protein and are considered to establish similar interactions with the cognate antigen. We used molecular dynamics simulations to understand the effect of mutations on the antibody–antigen interactions. The results provide a qualitative explanation for the increased 8F9 peptide affinity compared with that of M2J1. The emerging atomistic-detailed description of these complexes reveals the molecular effects of the somatic hypermutations occurring during affinity maturation.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2936-2950
Number of pages15
JournalFEBS Letters
Issue number18
StatePublished - Aug 30 2017
Externally publishedYes

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