Antigen epitopes provide valuable information useful for disease prevention, diagnosis, and treatment. Recently, more and more databases focusing on different types of epitopes have become available. Conformational epitopes are an important form of epitope formed by residues that are sequentially discontinuous but close together in three-dimensional space. These epitopes have implicit structural information, making them attractive for both theoretical and applied biomedical research. However, most existing databases focus on linear rather than conformational epitopes.
We describe CED, a special database of well defined conformational epitopes. CED provides a collection of conformational epitopes and related information including the residue make up and location of the epitope, the immunological property of the epitope, the source antigen and corresponding antibody of the epitope. All entries in this database are manually curated from articles published in peer review journals. The database can be browsed or searched through a user-friendly web interface. Most epitopes in CED can also be viewed interactively in the context of their 3D structures. In addition, the entries are also hyperlinked to various databases such as Swiss-Prot, PDB, KEGG and PubMed, providing wide background information.
A conformational epitope database called CED has been developed as an information resource for investigators involved in both theoretical and applied immunology research. It complements other existing specialised epitope databases. The database is freely available at http://web.kuicr.kyoto-u.ac.jp/~ced