Identification of relevant regions on structural and nonstructural proteins of Zika virus for vaccine and diagnostic test development: an in silico approach

E. A. Salvador, G. A. Pires de Souza, L. C. Cotta Malaquias, Tian Wang, L. F. Leomil Coelho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Zika virus (ZIKV) is an arbovirus belonging to the Flaviviridae family and the genus Flavivirus. Infection with ZIKV causes a mild, self-limiting febrile illness called Zika fever. However, ZIKV infection has been recently associated with microcephaly and Guillain-Barré syndrome. Vaccines for the disease are a high priority of World Health Organization. Several studies are currently being conducted to develop a vaccine against ZIKV, but until now there is no licensed ZIKV vaccine. This study used a novel immunoinformatics approach to identify potential T-cell immunogenic epitopes present in the structural and nonstructural proteins of ZIKV. Fourteen T-cell candidate epitopes were identified on ZIKV structural and nonstructural proteins: pr 36−50 ; C 61−75 ; C 103−117 ; E 374−382 ; E 477−491 ; NS2a 90−104 ; NS2a 174−188 ; NS2a 179−193 ; NS2a 190−204 ; NS2a 195−209 ; NS2a 200−214 ; NS3 175−189 ; and NS4a 82−96 ; NS4a 99−113 . Among these epitopes, only E 374−382 is a human leukocyte antigen (HLA) type I restricted epitope. All identified epitopes showed a low similarity with other important flaviviruses but had a high conservation rate among the ZIKV strains and a high population coverage rate. Therefore, these predicted T-cell epitopes are potential candidates targets for development of vaccines to prevent ZIKV infection.



  • Diagnostic test
  • Immunoinformatic
  • T-cell epitope
  • vaccine
  • Zika virus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Infectious Diseases

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