Immunogenicity of peptides for B cells is not impaired by overlapping T-cell epitope topology

D. P. Harris, H. M. Vordermeier, A. Arya, K. Bogdan, C. Moreno, J. Ivanyi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (SciVal)


The epitope specificity of T-cell help to B cells and of surface immunoglobulin-mediated B-cell-binding of antigens usually involves topographically distinct antigenic determinants. The possibility of cross-recognition of the same peptide sequence by both T cells and antibodies has been a matter of conflicting opinions. We investigated this subject by detailed mapping of T- and B-cell epitopes within four immunogenic mycobacterial peptides. The identified core sequences of T- and B-cell epitopes showed different topology within each peptide: they were partially overlapping or adjacent in two P38-derived peptides, but entirely overlapping in two P19-derived peptides. The critically important result using the two truncated peptides (P19/67-78 and P19/146-155) containing only the fully overlapping epitope cores was, that they retained full potency for inducing antibody responses. However, despite this desirable overlap of determinants, anti-peptide sera failed to block the proliferation of corresponding T-cell hybridomas. We conclude, that our study, in contrast to previous findings, suggests that overlapping topology of T- and B-cell epitopes within synthetic peptides does not necessarily impair B-cell immunogenicity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)348-354
Number of pages7
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1996


  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Antigen-Presenting Cells/immunology
  • B-Lymphocytes/immunology
  • Cell Line
  • Epitope Mapping
  • Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/chemistry
  • Female
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Inbred Strains
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Peptides/immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes/immunology


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