Monkeypox is a self-limiting zoonotic viral disease and causes smallpox-like symptoms. The disease has a case fatality ratio of 3–6% and, recently, a multi-country outbreak of the disease has occurred. The currently available vaccines that have provided immunization against monkeypox are classified as live attenuated vaccinia virus-based vaccines, which pose challenges of safety and efficacy in chronic infections. In this study, we have used an immunoinformatics-aided design of a multi-epitope vaccine (MEV) candidate by targeting monkeypox virus (MPXV) glycoproteins and membrane proteins. From these proteins, seven epitopes (two T-helper cell epitopes, four T-cytotoxic cell epitopes and one linear B cell epitopes) were finally selected and predicted as antigenic, non-allergic, interferon-γ activating and non-toxic. These epitopes were linked to adjuvants to design a non-allergic and antigenic candidate MPXV-MEV. Further, molecular docking and molecular dynamics simulations predicted stable interactions between predicted MEV and human receptor TLR5. Finally, the immune-simulation analysis showed that the candidate MPXV-MEV could elicit a human immune response. The results obtained from these in silico experiments are promising but require further validation through additional in vivo experiments.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases