Laboratory of Experimental Immunology
The Laboratory of Experimental Immunology (LEI) strives to understand the peptide-specific, MHC-restricted nature of T cell recognition. Our interests focus on antigen presentation to T cells, and in particular on the interaction between peptides and MHC class I and II molecules. We have launched the "human MHC project" (http://pubmed.gov/10322158, http://pubmed.gov/12361091), which aims at a complete mapping of all human MHC specificities. We have systematically worked to include all human MHC molecules. Recently, we have also used the experience gained from the human project to address MHC molecules in important animal species.
- To handle the diversity of the MHC we have developed efficient recombinant technologies for MHC production and purification (http://pubmed.gov/11592075, http://pubmed.gov/12592025).
- To generate examples on how MHC molecules work, we have developed faster and more versatile assays for measuring peptide-MHC interactions (http://pubmed.gov/7537104, http://pubmed.gov/12135423, http://pubmed.gov/19196700).
- To generate complete representation of how MHC molecules work, we introduced the use of positional scanning combinatorial peptide libraries enabling a rapid and complete analysis of MHC specificity (http://pubmed.gov/8765039).
- To predict the complicated peptide-MHC interaction we have used neural networks (or artificial intelligence) to capture the pattern recognizing aspect of peptide-MHC interaction (http://pubmed.gov/11556965, http://pubmed.gov/14617044) including an intelligent approach to sample the universe of peptides (http://pubmed.gov/14617044) and of MHC (http://pubmed.gov/18604266).
- The enormous amount of data and tools generated have recently been included in an international database of immune epitopes (http://pubmed.gov/15895191, http://pubmed.gov/15760272, http://pubmed.gov/16789818)
- The corresponding prediction serves are now available at http://www.cbs.dtu/Services
- To enumerate specific T cells, we have developed methods to generate MHC class I and II tetramers (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18301755, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24023895)
- To identify and validate class I and II restricted T cell epitopes, we have examined immune responses against viruses such as CMV, EBV and Yellow Fever virus.
LEI believes that the future ability of any scientist and/or clinician to rapidly screen entire genomes /transcriptomes, proteomes etc, multiple pathogen isolates and include all human immune diversity (that is human MHC, or HLA) will provide an entirely new approach to the development of vaccines and immunotherapy.