Monoclonal Antibody to a Specific Peptide-MHC Class II Complex

T lymphocytes play an important role in the immune system by recognizing foreign protein motifs on cells. T lymphocytes are stimulated to recognize these motifs through their interactions with peptide-MHC complexes (pMHC). Thus, studying pMHC is an important aspect of understanding how the immune system works, particularly with regard to the development of vaccines. Unfortunately, the detection of pMHC is largely dependent on indirect assays, due to the difficulty of producing antibodies for specific pMHC.

This invention regards the development of hybridomas (C4H3) for the production of antibodies that are highly specific for a particular pMHC complex consisting of hen egg lysozyme peptide 46-61 (HEL) and the I-Ak MHC class II molecule. These antibodies can be used for a myriad of purposes which include studying how cells form pMHC.

Potential Commercial Applications: Competitive Advantages:
  • Discovery of methods for antigen delivery in the development of vaccines.
  • Quantitation and distribution of pMHC complexes on cells.
  • Study antigen processing in experimental immunological research systems.
  • High specificity for the pMHC complex of HEL-I-Ak MHC class II molecule.
  • HEL-I-Ak is widely used in experimental immunological research systems, giving the hybridoma and antibodies great applicability.

Ronald Germain (NIAID)

Intellectual Property:
Research Tool -- Patent protection is not being pursued for this technology

G Zhong et al. Production, specificity, and functionality of monoclonal antibodies to specific peptide-major histocompatibility complex class II complexes formed by processing of exogenous protein. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 1997 Dec 9;94(25):13856-13861. PubMed abs
A Porgador et al. Localization, quantitation, and in situ detection of specific peptide-MHC class I complexes using a monoclonal antibody. Immunity. 1997 Jun;6(6):715-726. PubMed abs

Collaboration Opportunity:

The NIAID Lymphocyte Biology Section, Laboratory of Immunology is seeking statements of capability or interest from parties interested in collaborative research to further develop, evaluate, or commercialize monoclonal antibody C4H3, specific for HEL (46-61) bound to the MHC class II molecule I-Ak. Please contact Ronald N. Germain, M.D., Ph.D. at for more information.

Licensing Contact:
Whitney Hastings ,
NIH Office of Technology Transfer
Phone: 301-451-7337

OTT Reference No: E-021-2008/0

Updated: Feb-15-2013