by Mathilde Foglierini, Leontios Pappas, Antonio Lanzavecchia, Davide Corti, Laurent Perez
High-throughput sequencing of human immunoglobulin genes allows analysis of antibody repertoires and the reconstruction of clonal lineage evolution. The study of antibodies (Abs) affinity maturation is of specific interest to understand the generation of Abs with high affinity or broadly neutralizing activities. Moreover, phylogenic analysis enables the identification of the key somatic mutations required to achieve optimal antigen binding. The Immcantation framework provides a start-to-finish set of analytical methods for high-throughput adaptive immune receptor repertoire sequencing (AIRR-Seq; Rep-Seq) data. Furthermore, Immcantation’s Change-O package has developed IgPhyML, an algorithm designed to build specifically immunoglobulin (Ig) phylogenic trees. Meanwhile Phylip, an algorithm that has been originally developed for applications in ecology and macroevolution, can also be used for the phylogenic reconstruction of antibodies maturation pathway. To complement Ig lineages made by IgPhyML or Dnaml (Phylip), we developed AncesTree, a graphic user interface (GUI) that aims to give researchers the opportunity to interactively explore antibodies clonal evolution. AncesTree displays interactive immunoglobulins phylogenic tree, Ig related mutations and sequence alignments using additional information coming from specialized antibody tools. The GUI is a Java standalone application allowing interaction with Ig tree that can run under Windows, Linux and Mac OS.