Integration of probabilistic functional networks without an external Gold Standard

Katherine James*, Aoesha Alsobhe, Simon J Cockell, Anil Wipat, Matthew Pocock

*Corresponding author for this work

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Background: Probabilistic functional integrated networks (PFINs) are designed to aid our understanding of cellular biology and can be used to generate testable hypotheses about protein function. PFINs are generally created by scoring the quality of interaction datasets against a Gold Standard dataset, usually chosen from a separate high-quality data source, prior to their integration. Use of an external Gold Standard has several drawbacks, including data redundancy, data loss and the need for identifier mapping, which can complicate the network build and impact on PFIN performance. Additionally, there typically are no Gold Standard data for non-model organisms. Results: We describe the development of an integration technique, ssNet, that scores and integrates both high-throughput and low-throughout data from a single source database in a consistent manner without the need for an external Gold Standard dataset. Using data from Saccharomyces cerevisiae we show that ssNet is easier and faster, overcoming the challenges of data redundancy, Gold Standard bias and ID mapping. In addition ssNet results in less loss of data and produces a more complete network. Conclusions: The ssNet method allows PFINs to be built successfully from a single database, while producing comparable network performance to networks scored using an external Gold Standard source and with reduced data loss.

Original languageEnglish
Article number302
Number of pages18
JournalBMC Bioinformatics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 25 Jul 2022


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