The recently proposed concept of molecular connectivity maps enables researchers to integrate experimental measurements of genes, proteins, metabolites, and drug compounds under similar biological conditions. The study of these maps provides opportunities for future toxicogenomics and drug discovery applications. We developed a computational framework to build disease-specific drug-protein connectivity maps. We integrated gene/protein and drug connectivity information based on protein interaction networks and literature mining, without requiring gene expression profile information derived from drug perturbation experiments on disease samples. We described the development and application of this computational framework using Alzheimer's Disease (AD) as a primary example in three steps. First, molecular interaction networks were incorporated to reduce bias and improve relevance of AD seed proteins. Second, PubMed abstracts were used to retrieve enriched drug terms that are indirectly associated with AD through molecular mechanistic studies. Third and lastly, a comprehensive AD connectivity map was created by relating enriched drugs and related proteins in literature. We showed that this molecular connectivity map development approach outperformed both curated drug target databases and conventional information retrieval systems. Our initial explorations of the AD connectivity map yielded a new hypothesis that diltiazem and quinidine may be investigated as candidate drugs for AD treatment. Molecular connectivity maps derived computationally can help study molecular signature differences between different classes of drugs in specific disease contexts. To achieve overall good data coverage and quality, a series of statistical methods have been developed to overcome high levels of data noise in biological networks and literature mining results. Further development of computational molecular connectivity maps to cover major disease areas will likely set up a new model for drug development, in which therapeutic/toxicological profiles of candidate drugs can be checked computationally before costly clinical trials begin.
Molecular connectivity maps between drugs and a wide range of bio-molecular entities can help researchers to study and compare the molecular therapeutic/toxicological profiles of many candidate drugs. Recent studies in this area have focused on linking drug molecules and genes in specific disease contexts using drug-perturbed gene expression experiments, which can be costly and time-consuming to derive. In this paper, we developed a computational framework to build disease-specific drug-protein connectivity maps, by mining molecular interaction networks and PubMed abstracts. Using Alzheimer's Disease (AD) as a case study, we described how drug-protein molecular connectivity maps can be constructed to overcome data coverage and noise issues inherent in automatically extracted results. We showed that this new approach outperformed both curated drug target databases and conventional text mining systems in retrieving disease-related drugs, with an overall balanced performance of sensitivity, specificity, and positive predictive values. The AD molecular connectivity map contained novel information on AD-related genes/proteins, AD candidate drugs, and protein therapeutic/toxicological profiles of all the AD candidate drugs. Bi-clustering of the molecular connectivity map revealed interesting patterns of functionally similar proteins and drugs, therefore creating new opportunities for future drug development applications.
Interaction of a drug or chemical with a biological system can result in a gene-expression profile or signature characteristic of the event. Using a suitably robust algorithm these signatures can potentially be used to connect molecules with similar pharmacological or toxicological properties by gene expression profile. Lamb et al first proposed the Connectivity Map [Lamb et al (2006), Science 313, 1929–1935] to make successful connections among small molecules, genes, and diseases using genomic signatures.
Here we have built on the principles of the Connectivity Map to present a simpler and more robust method for the construction of reference gene-expression profiles and for the connection scoring scheme, which importantly allows the valuation of statistical significance of all the connections observed. We tested the new method with two randomly generated gene signatures and three experimentally derived gene signatures (for HDAC inhibitors, estrogens, and immunosuppressive drugs, respectively). Our testing with this method indicates that it achieves a higher level of specificity and sensitivity and so advances the original method.
The method presented here not only offers more principled statistical procedures for testing connections, but more importantly it provides effective safeguard against false connections at the same time achieving increased sensitivity. With its robust performance, the method has potential use in the drug development pipeline for the early recognition of pharmacological and toxicological properties in chemicals and new drug candidates, and also more broadly in other 'omics sciences.
Global molecular profiling of cancers has shown broad utility in delineating pathways and processes underlying disease, in predicting prognosis and response to therapy, and in suggesting novel treatments. To gain further insights from such data, we have integrated and analyzed a comprehensive collection of “molecular concepts” representing > 2500 cancer-related gene expression signatures from Oncomine and manual curation of the literature, drug treatment signatures from the Connectivity Map, target gene sets from genome-scale regulatory motif analyses, and reference gene sets from several gene and protein annotation databases. We computed pairwise association analysis on all 13,364 molecular concepts and identified > 290,000 significant associations, generating hypotheses that link cancer types and subtypes, pathways, mechanisms, and drugs. To navigate a network of associations, we developed an analysis platform, the Molecular Concepts Map. We demonstrate the utility of the approach by highlighting molecular concepts analyses of Myc pathway activation, breast cancer relapse, and retinoic acid treatment.
Cancer; bioinformatics; gene expression signature; network; oncomine
Connectivity mapping is a recently developed technique for discovering the underlying connections between different biological states based on gene-expression similarities. The sscMap method has been shown to provide enhanced sensitivity in mapping meaningful connections leading to testable biological hypotheses and in identifying drug candidates with particular pharmacological and/or toxicological properties. Challenges remain, however, as to how to prioritise the large number of discovered connections in an unbiased manner such that the success rate of any following-up investigation can be maximised. We introduce a new concept, gene-signature perturbation, which aims to test whether an identified connection is stable enough against systematic minor changes (perturbation) to the gene-signature. We applied the perturbation method to three independent datasets obtained from the GEO database: acute myeloid leukemia (AML), cervical cancer, and breast cancer treated with letrozole. We demonstrate that the perturbation approach helps to identify meaningful biological connections which suggest the most relevant candidate drugs. In the case of AML, we found that the prevalent compounds were retinoic acids and PPAR activators. For cervical cancer, our results suggested that potential drugs are likely to involve the EGFR pathway; and with the breast cancer dataset, we identified candidates that are involved in prostaglandin inhibition. Thus the gene-signature perturbation approach added real values to the whole connectivity mapping process, allowing for increased specificity in the identification of possible therapeutic candidates.
Genome medicine uses genomic information in the diagnosis of disease and in prescribing treatment. This transdisciplinary field brings together knowledge on the relationships between genetics, pathophysiology and pharmacology. Systems pharmacology aims to understand the actions and adverse effects of drugs by considering targets in the context of the biological networks in which they exist. Genome medicine forms the base on which systems pharmacology can develop. Experimental and computational approaches enable systems pharmacology to obtain holistic, mechanistic information on disease networks and drug responses, and to identify new drug targets and specific drug combinations. Network analyses of interactions involved in pathophysiology and drug response across various scales of organization, from molecular to organismal, will allow the integration of the systems-level understanding of drug action with genome medicine. The interface of the two fields will enable drug discovery for personalized medicine. Here we provide a perspective on the questions and approaches that drive the development of these new interrelated fields.
Systems pharmacology is an emerging area of pharmacology which utilizes network analysis of drug action as one of its approaches. By considering drug actions and side effects in the context of the regulatory networks within which the drug targets and disease gene products function, network analysis promises to greatly increase our knowledge of the mechanisms underlying the multiple actions of drugs. Systems pharmacology can provide new approaches for drug discovery for complex diseases. The integrated approach used in systems pharmacology can allow for drug action to be considered in the context of the whole genome. Network-based studies are becoming an increasingly important tool in understanding the relationships between drug action and disease susceptibility genes. This review discusses how analysis of biological networks has contributed to the genesis of systems pharmacology and how these studies have improved global understanding of drug targets, suggested new targets and approaches for therapeutics, and provided a deeper understanding of the effects of drugs. Taken together, these types of analyses can lead to new therapeutic options while improving the safety and efficacy of existing medications.
Systems biological approach of molecular connectivity map has reached to a great interest to understand the gene functional similarities between the diseases. In this study, we developed a computational framework to build molecular connectivity maps by integrating mutated and differentially expressed genes of neurological and psychiatric diseases to determine its relationship with aging.
The systematic large-scale analyses of 124 human diseases create three classes of molecular connectivity maps. First, molecular interaction of disease protein network generates 3632 proteins with 6172 interactions, which determines the common genes/proteins between diseases. Second, Disease-disease network includes 4845 positively scored disease-disease relationships. The comparison of these disease-disease pairs with Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) classification tree suggests 25% of the disease-disease pairs were in same disease area. The remaining can be a novel disease-disease relationship based on gene/protein similarity. Inclusion of aging genes set showed 79 neurological and 20 psychiatric diseases have the strong association with aging. Third and lastly, a curated disease biomarker network was created by relating the proteins/genes in specific disease contexts, such analysis showed 73 markers for 24 diseases. Further, the overall quality of the results was achieved by a series of statistical methods, to avoid insignificant data in biological networks.
This study improves the understanding of the complex interactions that occur between neurological and psychiatric diseases with aging, which lead to determine the diagnostic markers. Also, the disease-disease association results could be helpful to determine the symptom relationships between neurological and psychiatric diseases. Together, our study presents many research opportunities in post-genomic biomarkers development.
Pharmacogenomics studies the relationship between genetic variation and the variation in drug response phenotypes. The field is rapidly gaining importance: it promises drugs targeted to particular subpopulations based on genetic background. The pharmacogenomics literature has expanded rapidly, but is dispersed in many journals. It is challenging, therefore, to identify important associations between drugs and molecular entities – particularly genes and gene variants, and thus these critical connections are often lost. Text mining techniques can allow us to convert the free-style text to a computable, searchable format in which pharmacogenomic concepts (such as genes, drugs, polymorphisms, and diseases) are identified, and important links between these concepts are recorded. Availability of full text articles as input into text mining engines is key, as literature abstracts often do not contain sufficient information to identify these pharmacogenomic associations.
Thus, building on a tool called Textpresso, we have created the Pharmspresso tool to assist in identifying important pharmacogenomic facts in full text articles. Pharmspresso parses text to find references to human genes, polymorphisms, drugs and diseases and their relationships. It presents these as a series of marked-up text fragments, in which key concepts are visually highlighted. To evaluate Pharmspresso, we used a gold standard of 45 human-curated articles. Pharmspresso identified 78%, 61%, and 74% of target gene, polymorphism, and drug concepts, respectively.
Pharmspresso is a text analysis tool that extracts pharmacogenomic concepts from the literature automatically and thus captures our current understanding of gene-drug interactions in a computable form. We have made Pharmspresso available at .
Drug repositioning offers the possibility of faster development times and reduced risks in drug discovery. With the rapid development of high-throughput technologies and ever-increasing accumulation of whole genome-level datasets, an increasing number of diseases and drugs can be comprehensively characterized by the changes they induce in gene expression, protein, metabolites and phenotypes.
We performed a systematic, large-scale analysis of genomic expression profiles of human diseases and drugs to create a disease-drug network. A network of 170,027 significant interactions was extracted from the ∼24.5 million comparisons between ∼7,000 publicly available transcriptomic profiles. The network includes 645 disease-disease, 5,008 disease-drug, and 164,374 drug-drug relationships. At least 60% of the disease-disease pairs were in the same disease area as determined by the Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) disease classification tree. The remaining can drive a molecular level nosology by discovering relationships between seemingly unrelated diseases, such as a connection between bipolar disorder and hereditary spastic paraplegia, and a connection between actinic keratosis and cancer. Among the 5,008 disease-drug links, connections with negative scores suggest new indications for existing drugs, such as the use of some antimalaria drugs for Crohn's disease, and a variety of existing drugs for Huntington's disease; while the positive scoring connections can aid in drug side effect identification, such as tamoxifen's undesired carcinogenic property. From the ∼37K drug-drug relationships, we discover relationships that aid in target and pathway deconvolution, such as 1) KCNMA1 as a potential molecular target of lobeline, and 2) both apoptotic DNA fragmentation and G2/M DNA damage checkpoint regulation as potential pathway targets of daunorubicin.
We have automatically generated thousands of disease and drug expression profiles using GEO datasets, and constructed a large scale disease-drug network for effective and efficient drug repositioning as well as drug target/pathway identification.
Discovering that drug entities already approved for one disease are effective treatments for other distinct diseases can be highly beneficial and cost effective. To do this predictively, our conjecture is that a semantic infrastructure linking mechanistic relationships between pharmacologic entities and multidimensional knowledge of biological systems and disease processes will be highly enabling.
To develop a knowledge framework capable of modeling and interconnecting drug actions and disease mechanisms across diverse biological systems contexts, we designed a Disease-Drug Correlation Ontology (DDCO), formalized in OWL, that integrates multiple ontologies, controlled vocabularies, and data schemas and interlinks these with diverse datasets extracted from pharmacological and biological domains. Using the complex disease Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) as an example, a high-dimensional pharmacome-diseasome graph network was generated as RDF XML, and subjected to graph-theoretic proximity and connectivity analytic approaches to rank drugs versus the compendium of SLE-associated genes, pathways, and clinical features. Tamoxifen, a current candidate therapeutic for SLE, was the highest ranked drug.
This early stage demonstration highlights critical directions to follow that will enable translational pharmacotherapeutic research. The uniform application of Semantic Web methodology to problems in data integration, knowledge representation, and analysis provides an efficient and potentially powerful means to allow mining of drug action and disease mechanism relationships. Further improvements in semantic representation of mechanistic relationships will provide a fertile basis for accelerated drug repositioning, reasoning, and discovery across the spectrum of human disease.
Disease and Gene Annotations database (DGA, http://dga.nubic.northwestern.edu) is a collaborative effort aiming to provide a comprehensive and integrative annotation of the human genes in disease network context by integrating computable controlled vocabulary of the Disease Ontology (DO version 3 revision 2510, which has 8043 inherited, developmental and acquired human diseases), NCBI Gene Reference Into Function (GeneRIF) and molecular interaction network (MIN). DGA integrates these resources together using semantic mappings to build an integrative set of disease-to-gene and gene-to-gene relationships with excellent coverage based on current knowledge. DGA is kept current by periodically reparsing DO, GeneRIF, and MINs. DGA provides a user-friendly and interactive web interface system enabling users to efficiently query, download and visualize the DO tree structure and annotations as a tree, a network graph or a tabular list. To facilitate integrative analysis, DGA provides a web service Application Programming Interface for integration with external analytic tools.
Connectivity mapping is a process to recognize novel pharmacological and toxicological properties in small molecules by comparing their gene expression signatures with others in a database. A simple and robust method for connectivity mapping with increased specificity and sensitivity was recently developed, and its utility demonstrated using experimentally derived gene signatures.
This paper introduces sscMap (statistically significant connections' map), a Java application designed to undertake connectivity mapping tasks using the recently published method. The software is bundled with a default collection of reference gene-expression profiles based on the publicly available dataset from the Broad Institute Connectivity Map 02, which includes data from over 7000 Affymetrix microarrays, for over 1000 small-molecule compounds, and 6100 treatment instances in 5 human cell lines. In addition, the application allows users to add their custom collections of reference profiles and is applicable to a wide range of other 'omics technologies.
The utility of sscMap is two fold. First, it serves to make statistically significant connections between a user-supplied gene signature and the 6100 core reference profiles based on the Broad Institute expanded dataset. Second, it allows users to apply the same improved method to custom-built reference profiles which can be added to the database for future referencing. The software can be freely downloaded from .
Substantial amounts of data on cell signaling, metabolic, gene regulatory and other biological pathways have been accumulated in literature and electronic databases. Conventionally, this information is stored in the form of pathway diagrams and can be characterized as highly "compartmental" (i.e. individual pathways are not connected into more general networks). Current approaches for representing pathways are limited in their capacity to model molecular interactions in their spatial and temporal context. Moreover, the critical knowledge of cause-effect relationships among signaling events is not reflected by most conventional approaches for manipulating pathways.
We have applied a semantic network (SN) approach to develop and implement a model for cell signaling pathways. The semantic model has mapped biological concepts to a set of semantic agents and relationships, and characterized cell signaling events and their participants in the hierarchical and spatial context. In particular, the available information on the behaviors and interactions of the PI3K enzyme family has been integrated into the SN environment and a cell signaling network in human macrophages has been constructed. A SN-application has been developed to manipulate the locations and the states of molecules and to observe their actions under different biological scenarios. The approach allowed qualitative simulation of cell signaling events involving PI3Ks and identified pathways of molecular interactions that led to known cellular responses as well as other potential responses during bacterial invasions in macrophages.
We concluded from our results that the semantic network is an effective method to model cell signaling pathways. The semantic model allows proper representation and integration of information on biological structures and their interactions at different levels. The reconstruction of the cell signaling network in the macrophage allowed detailed investigation of connections among various essential molecules and reflected the cause-effect relationships among signaling events. The simulation demonstrated the dynamics of the semantic network, where a change of states on a molecule can alter its function and potentially cause a chain-reaction effect in the system.
A neurological disorder is a disorder caused by the deterioration of certain nerve cells called neurons. Changes in these cells cause them to function abnormally, eventually bringing
about their death. In this paper we present a comprehensive database for neurodegenerative diseases, a first-of-its kind covering all known or suspected genes, proteins, pathways related
to neurodegenerative diseases. This dynamically compiled database allows researchers to link neurological disorders to the candidate genes & proteins. It serves as a tool to navigate potential
gene-protein-pathway relationships in the context of neurodegenerative diseases. The neurodegenerative disorder database covers more then 100 disease concepts including synonyms and research topics.
The current version of the database provides links to 728 abstracts and over 203 unique genes/proteins with 137 drugs. Also it is integrated well with other related databases. The aim of this
database is to provide the researcher with a quick overview of potential links between genes and proteins with related neurodegenerative diseases. Thus DND providing a user-friendly interface is
designed as a source to enhance research on neurodegenerative disorders.
neurodegenerative disorder; neurological disorders; web database
Gene expression profiling and the analysis of protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks may support the identification of disease bio-markers and potential drug targets. Thus, a step forward in the development of systems approaches to medicine is the integrative analysis of these data sources in specific pathological conditions. We report such an integrative bioinformatics analysis in human heart failure (HF). A global PPI network in HF was assembled, which by itself represents a useful compendium of the current status of human HF-relevant interactions. This provided the basis for the analysis of interaction connectivity patterns in relation to a HF gene expression data set.
Relationships between the significance of the differentiation of gene expression and connectivity degrees in the PPI network were established. In addition, relationships between gene co-expression and PPI network connectivity were analysed. Highly-connected proteins are not necessarily encoded by genes significantly differentially expressed. Genes that are not significantly differentially expressed may encode proteins that exhibit diverse network connectivity patterns. Furthermore, genes that were not defined as significantly differentially expressed may encode proteins with many interacting partners. Genes encoding network hubs may exhibit weak co-expression with the genes encoding their interacting protein partners. We also found that hubs and superhubs display a significant diversity of co-expression patterns in comparison to peripheral nodes. Gene Ontology (GO) analysis established that highly-connected proteins are likely to be engaged in higher level GO biological process terms, while low-connectivity proteins tend to be engaged in more specific disease-related processes.
This investigation supports the hypothesis that the integrative analysis of differential gene expression and PPI network analysis may facilitate a better understanding of functional roles and the identification of potential drug targets in human heart failure.
Detailed and systematic understanding of the biological effects of millions of available compounds on living cells is a significant challenge. As most compounds impact multiple targets and pathways, traditional methods for analyzing structure-function relationships are not comprehensive enough. Therefore more advanced integrative models are needed for predicting biological effects elicited by specific chemical features. As a step towards creating such computational links we developed a data-driven chemical systems biology approach to comprehensively study the relationship of 76 structural 3D-descriptors (VolSurf, chemical space) of 1159 drugs with the microarray gene expression responses (biological space) they elicited in three cancer cell lines. The analysis covering 11350 genes was based on data from the Connectivity Map. We decomposed the biological response profiles into components, each linked to a characteristic chemical descriptor profile.
Integrated analysis of both the chemical and biological space was more informative than either dataset alone in predicting drug similarity as measured by shared protein targets. We identified ten major components that link distinct VolSurf chemical features across multiple compounds to specific cellular responses. For example, component 2 (hydrophobic properties) strongly linked to DNA damage response, while component 3 (hydrogen bonding) was associated with metabolic stress. Individual structural and biological features were often linked to one cell line only, such as leukemia cells (HL-60) specifically responding to cardiac glycosides.
In summary, our approach identified several novel links between specific chemical structure properties and distinct biological responses in cells incubated with these drugs. Importantly, the analysis focused on chemical-biological properties that emerge across multiple drugs. The decoding of such systematic relationships is necessary to build better models of drug effects, including unanticipated types of molecular properties having strong biological effects.
Comprehensive understanding of molecular mechanisms underlying viral infection is a major challenge towards the discovery of new antiviral drugs and susceptibility factors of human diseases. New advances in the field are expected from systems-level modelling and integration of the incessant torrent of high-throughput "-omics" data.
Here, we describe the Human Infectome protein interaction Network, a novel systems virology model of a virtual virus-infected human cell concerning 110 viruses. This in silico model was applied to comprehensively explore the molecular relationships between viruses and their associated diseases. This was done by merging virus-host and host-host physical protein-protein interactomes with the set of genes essential for viral replication and involved in human genetic diseases. This systems-level approach provides strong evidence that viral proteomes target a wide range of functional and inter-connected modules of proteins as well as highly central and bridging proteins within the human interactome. The high centrality of targeted proteins was correlated to their essentiality for viruses' lifecycle, using functional genomic RNAi data. A stealth-attack of viruses on proteins bridging cellular functions was demonstrated by simulation of cellular network perturbations, a property that could be essential in the molecular aetiology of some human diseases. Networking the Human Infectome and Diseasome unravels the connectivity of viruses to a wide range of diseases and profiled molecular basis of Hepatitis C Virus-induced diseases as well as 38 new candidate genetic predisposition factors involved in type 1 diabetes mellitus.
The Human Infectome and Diseasome Networks described here provide a unique gateway towards the comprehensive modelling and analysis of the systems level properties associated to viral infection as well as candidate genes potentially involved in the molecular aetiology of human diseases.
Prescription drug abuse has become a major public health problem. Relationships and social context are important contributing factors. Social media provides online channels for people to build relationships that may influence attitudes and behaviors.
To determine whether people who show signs of prescription drug abuse connect online with others who reinforce this behavior, and to observe the conversation and engagement of these networks with regard to prescription drug abuse.
Twitter statuses mentioning prescription drugs were collected from November 2011 to November 2012. From this set, 25 Twitter users were selected who discussed topics indicative of prescription drug abuse. Social circles of 100 people were discovered around each of these Twitter users; the tweets of the Twitter users in these networks were collected and analyzed according to prescription drug abuse discussion and interaction with other users about the topic.
From November 2011 to November 2012, 3,389,771 mentions of prescription drug terms were observed. For the 25 social circles (n=100 for each circle), on average 53.96% (SD 24.3) of the Twitter users used prescription drug terms at least once in their posts, and 37.76% (SD 20.8) mentioned another Twitter user by name in a post with a prescription drug term. Strong correlation was found between the kinds of drugs mentioned by the index user and his or her network (mean r=0.73), and between the amount of interaction about prescription drugs and a level of abusiveness shown by the network (r=0.85, P<.001).
Twitter users who discuss prescription drug abuse online are surrounded by others who also discuss it—potentially reinforcing a negative behavior and social norm.
prescription drug abuse; social media; social circles; Twitter
Summary: Drug versus Disease (DvD) provides a pipeline, available through R
or Cytoscape, for the comparison of drug and disease gene expression profiles from public
microarray repositories. Negatively correlated profiles can be used to generate hypotheses
of drug-repurposing, whereas positively correlated profiles may be used to infer side
effects of drugs. DvD allows users to compare drug and disease signatures with dynamic
access to databases Array Express, Gene Expression Omnibus and data from the Connectivity
Availability and implementation: R package (submitted to Bioconductor) under
GPL 3 and Cytoscape plug-in freely available for download at www.ebi.ac.uk/saezrodriguez/DVD/.
Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics
Gastric cancer continues to be one of the deadliest cancers in the world and therefore identification of new drugs targeting this type of cancer is thus of significant importance. The purpose of this study was to identify and validate a therapeutic agent which might improve the outcomes for gastric cancer patients in the future.
Using microarray technology, we generated a gene expression profile of human gastric cancer–specific genes from human gastric cancer tissue samples. We used this profile in the Broad Institute's Connectivity Map analysis to identify candidate therapeutic compounds for gastric cancer. We found the histone deacetylase inhibitor vorinostat as the lead compound and thus a potential therapeutic drug for gastric cancer. Vorinostat induced both apoptosis and autophagy in gastric cancer cell lines. Pharmacological and genetic inhibition of autophagy however, increased the therapeutic efficacy of vorinostat, indicating that a combination of vorinostat with autophagy inhibitors may therapeutically be more beneficial. Moreover, gene expression analysis of gastric cancer identified a collection of genes (ITGB5, TYMS, MYB, APOC1, CBX5, PLA2G2A, and KIF20A) whose expression was elevated in gastric tumor tissue and downregulated more than 2-fold by vorinostat treatment in gastric cancer cell lines. In contrast, SCGB2A1, TCN1, CFD, APLP1, and NQO1 manifested a reversed pattern.
We showed that analysis of gene expression signature may represent an emerging approach to discover therapeutic agents for gastric cancer, such as vorinostat. The observation of altered gene expression after vorinostat treatment may provide the clue to identify the molecular mechanism of vorinostat and those patients likely to benefit from vorinostat treatment.
Cells must respond to various perturbations using their limited available gene repertoires. In order to study how cells coordinate various responses, we conducted a comprehensive comparison of 1,186 gene expression signatures (gene lists) associated with various genetic and chemical perturbations.
We identified 7,419 statistically significant overlaps between various published gene lists. Most (80%) of the overlaps can be represented by a highly connected network, a "molecular signature map," that highlights the correlation of various expression signatures. By dissecting this network, we identified sub-networks that define clusters of gene sets related to common biological processes (cell cycle, immune response, etc). Examination of these sub-networks has confirmed relationships among various pathways and also generated new hypotheses. For example, our result suggests that glutamine deficiency might suppress cellular growth by inhibiting the MYC pathway. Interestingly, we also observed 1,369 significant overlaps between a set of genes upregulated by factor X and a set of genes downregulated by factor Y, suggesting a repressive interaction between X and Y factors.
Our results suggest that molecular-level responses to diverse chemical and genetic perturbations are heavily interconnected in a modular fashion. Also, shared molecular pathways can be identified by comparing newly defined gene expression signatures with databases of previously published gene expression signatures.
Accurate knowledge of molecular structure is a prerequisite for rational drug design. This review examines the role of x-ray crystallography in providing the required structural information and advances in the field of x-ray crystallography that enhance or expand its role.
X-ray crystallography of new drugs candidates and intermediates can provide valuable information of new syntheses and parameters for quantitative structure activity relationships (QSAR).
Crystallographic studies play a vital role in many disciplines including materials science, chemistry, pharmacology, and molecular biology. X-ray crystallography is the most comprehensive technique available to determine molecular structure. A requirement for the high accuracy of crystallographic structures is that a ‘good crystal’ must be found, and this is often the rate-limiting step. In the past three decades developments in detectors, increases in computer power, and powerful graphics capabilities have contributed to a dramatic increase in the number of materials characterized by x-ray crystallography. More recently the advent of high-throughput crystallization techniques has enhanced our ability to produce that one good crystal required for crystallographic analysis.
Continuing advances in all phases of a crystallographic study have expanded the ranges of samples which can be analyzes by x-ray crystallography to include larger molecules, smaller or weakly diffracting crystals, and twinned crystals.
x-ray crystallography; drug design; absolute configuration
We examine how physiology and pathophysiology are studied from a systems perspective, using high-throughput experiments and computational analysis of regulatory networks. We describe the integration of these analyses with pharmacology, which leads to new understanding of drug action and enables drug discovery for complex diseases. Network studies of drug-target relationships can serve as an indication on the general trends in the approved drugs and the drug-discovery progress. There is a growing number of targeted therapies approved and in the pipeline, which meets a new set of problems with efficacy and adverse effects. The pitfalls of these mechanistically based drugs are described, along with how a systems view of drug action is increasingly important to uncover intricate signaling mechanisms that play an important part in drug action, resistance mechanisms, and off-target effects. Computational methodologies enable the classification of drugs according to their structures and to which proteins they bind. Recent studies have combined the structural analyses with analysis of regulatory networks to make predictions about the therapeutic effects of drugs for complex diseases and possible off-target effects.
drugome; signaling networks; systems biology; systems pharmacology; targeted therapy
We have devised a chemocentric informatics methodology for drug discovery integrating independent approaches to mining biomolecular databases. As a proof of concept, we have searched for novel putative cognition enhancers. First, we generated Quantitative Structure- Activity Relationship (QSAR) models of compounds binding to 5-hydroxytryptamine-6 receptor (5HT6R), a known target for cognition enhancers, and employed these models for virtual screening to identify putative 5-HT6R actives. Second, we queried chemogenomics data from the Connectivity Map (http://www.broad.mit.edu/cmap/) with the gene expression profile signatures of Alzheimer’s disease patients to identify compounds putatively linked to the disease. Thirteen common hits were tested in 5-HT6R radioligand binding assays and ten were confirmed as actives. Four of them were known selective estrogen receptor modulators that were never reported as 5-HT6R ligands. Furthermore, nine of the confirmed actives were reported elsewhere to have memory-enhancing effects. The approaches discussed herein can be used broadly to identify novel drug-target-disease associations.
Whole genome expression profiles are widely used to discover molecular subtypes of diseases. A remaining challenge is to identify the correspondence or commonality of subtypes found in multiple, independent data sets generated on various platforms. While model-based supervised learning is often used to make these connections, the models can be biased to the training data set and thus miss inherent, relevant substructure in the test data. Here we describe an unsupervised subclass mapping method (SubMap), which reveals common subtypes between independent data sets. The subtypes within a data set can be determined by unsupervised clustering or given by predetermined phenotypes before applying SubMap. We define a measure of correspondence for subtypes and evaluate its significance building on our previous work on gene set enrichment analysis. The strength of the SubMap method is that it does not impose the structure of one data set upon another, but rather uses a bi-directional approach to highlight the common substructures in both. We show how this method can reveal the correspondence between several cancer-related data sets. Notably, it identifies common subtypes of breast cancer associated with estrogen receptor status, and a subgroup of lymphoma patients who share similar survival patterns, thus improving the accuracy of a clinical outcome predictor.