Development of new therapeutical/adjuvant molecules by pepscan mapping of autophagy and IFN inducing determinants of rhabdoviral G proteins

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Surface glycoproteins of enveloped virus are potent elicitors of both innate and adaptive host immune responses. Therefore, the identification of viral glycoprotein determinants directly implicated in the induction of these responses might be of special interest for designing new therapeutical/adjuvant molecules. In this work we review the contribution of the “pepscan” approach to the screening of viral functions in the sequence of glycoprotein G (gpG) of the fish rhabdovirus of viral hemorrhagic septicemia (VHSV). Among others, by scanning gpG peptides, it has been possible to identify and validate minimal determinants for gpG directly implicated in initiating the fish type I Interferon-associated immune responses as well as in the antiviral autophagy program. Further fine-tunning of the identified peptides in the gpG of VHSV has allowed designing novel adjuvants that decrease DNA vaccine requirements and identify possible innovative antiviral molecules. In addition, these results have also contributed to improve our knowledge on how to stimulate the fish immune system.

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