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Nucleic Acids Res. 2007 Jan;35(Database issue):D906-10. Epub 2006 Nov 7.

SuperHapten: a comprehensive database for small immunogenic compounds.

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Institute of Molecular Biology and Bioinformatics, Charité-University Medicine Berlin, Arnimallee 22, 14195 Berlin, Germany.


The immune system protects organisms from foreign proteins, peptide epitopes and a multitude of chemical compounds. Among these, haptens are small molecules, eliciting an immune response when conjugated with carrier molecules. Known haptens are xenobiotics or natural compounds, which can induce a number of autoimmune diseases like contact dermatitis or asthma. Furthermore, haptens are utilized in the development of biosensors, immunomodulators and new vaccines. Although hapten-induced allergies account for 6-10% of all adverse drug effects, the understanding of the correlation between structural and haptenic properties is rather fragmentary. We have developed a manually curated hapten database, SuperHapten, integrating information from literature and web resources. The current version of the database compiles 2D/3D structures, physicochemical properties and references for about 7500 haptens and 25,000 synonyms. The commercial availability is documented for about 6300 haptens and 450 related antibodies, enabling experimental approaches on cross-reactivity. The haptens are classified regarding their origin: pesticides, herbicides, insecticides, drugs, natural compounds, etc. Queries allow identification of haptens and associated antibodies according to functional class, carrier protein, chemical scaffold, composition or structural similarity. SuperHapten is available online at

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