Background Most antibodies recognize conformational or discontinuous epitopes that have a specific 3- dimensional shape; however, determination of discontinuous B-cell epitopes is a major challenge in bioscience. Moreover, the current methods for identifying peptide epitopes often involve laborious, high-cost peptide screening programs. Here, we present a novel microarray method for identifying discontinuous B-cell epitopes in celiac disease (CD) by using a silicon-based peptide array and computational methods. Methods Using a novel silicon-based microarray platform with a multi-pillar chip, overlapping 12-mer peptide sequences of all native and deamidated gliadins, which are known to trigger CD, were synthesized in situ and used to identify peptide epitopes. Results Using a computational algorithm that considered disease specificity of peptide sequences, 2 distinct epitope sets were identified. Further, by combining the most discriminative 3-mer gliadin sequences with randomly interpolated3- or 6-mer peptide sequences, novel discontinuous epitopes were identified and further optimized to maximize disease discrimination. The final discontinuous epitope sets were tested in a confirmatory cohort of CD patients and controls, yielding 99% sensitivity and 100% specificity. Conclusions These novel sets of epitopes derived from gliadin have a high degree of accuracy in differentiating CD from controls, compared with standard serologic tests. The method of ultrahigh- density peptide microarray described here would be broadly useful to develop highfidelity diagnostic tests and explore pathogenesis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)