The flavivirus envelope protein is the dominant antigen in eliciting neutralizing antibodies and plays an important role in inducing immunologic responses in the infected host. We have determined the solution structure of the major antigenic domain (domain III) of the Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) envelope protein. The JEV domain III forms a β-barrel type structure composed of six antiparallel β-strands resembling the immunoglobulin constant domain. We have also identified epitopes of the JEV domain III to its neutralizing antibody by chemical shift perturbation measurements. Site-directed mutagenesis experiments are performed to confirm the NMR results. Our study provides a structural basis for understanding the mechanism of immunologic protection and for rational design of vaccines effective against flaviviruses.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology