Interactome prediction, analysis and dissemination: showcase of our research projects
With GWAS studies enabled by high throughput biotechnologies and with development of suitable algorithms, genetic basis is being revealed for a number of diseases. NHGRI catalogs GWAS studies of close to 1,500 different diseases or traits. Each of these studies identified a set of genes related to some disease or traits. What is the next step in understanding the biological aspects of these diseases? The interactome, or in other words the protein-protein interaction network, literally allows us to ‘connect the dots’ towards understanding the relation between genes and the molecular mechanisms by which they relate to specific diseases. While this is so, we have only a partial knowledge of the interactome. My group is working on discovering hitherto unknown protein-protein interactions. We will present the open challenges in this area and our approaches to address these challenges. We will also demonstrate how we are disseminating these novel predictions to biologists. Students who work(ed) on this project are: Thahir Mohamed, Seshan Ananthasubramanian, Naoki Orii and Lavanya Viswanathan (past students); and Suyoun Kim, Adam Handen and Haohan Wang (current students). Our website is at: http://tonks.dbmi.pitt.edu/.