Hiding in Plain Sight—A New Look at HLA Epitopes: A Case Report

A. R. Tambur*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


“Epitope matching” has become a buzz word in solid organ transplantation. Its goal is to improve matching between donor and recipient, to minimize risk for antibody-mediated rejection and to reduce sensitization associated with graft failure. Current software allows identification and enumeration of amino acid sequence mismatches in the form of HLA eplets; however, “eplets” and “epitopes” are not interchangeable terms, and the understanding of what contributes to the antigenicity and immunogenicity of HLA B cell epitopes is still very limited and inadequate. In fact, we still do not know what constitutes an HLA epitope or how to define it in a clinically useful way. To allow for judicious implementation of epitope matching, it is critical to explore the full spectrum of factors that affect allorecognition. In exploring antibody-binding patterns, we have uncovered a potential tool—currently hidden in plain sight—that may shed light on some aspects of epitope characteristics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3286-3291
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Transplantation
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2016


  • alloantibody
  • antibody biology
  • antigen presentation/recognition
  • histocompatibility
  • major histocompatibility complex (MHC)
  • organ transplantation in general
  • sensitization
  • translational research/science

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Transplantation
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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