Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Virginia Tech computer scientists develop new way to study molecular networks

25.01.2013
In biology, molecules can have multi-way interactions within cells, and until recently, computational analysis of these links has been "incomplete," according to T. M. Murali, associate professor of computer science in the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech.

His group authored an article on their new approach to address these shortcomings, titled "Reverse Engineering Molecular Hypergraphs," that received the Best Paper Award at the recent 2012 ACM Conference on Bioinformatics, Computational Biology and Biomedicine.

Intricate networks of connections among molecules control the processes that occur within cells. The "analysis of these interaction networks has relied almost entirely on graphs for modeling the information. Since a link in a graph connects at most two molecules (e.g., genes or proteins), such edges cannot accurately represent interactions among multiple molecules. These interactions occur very often within cells," the computer scientists wrote in their paper.

To overcome the limitations in the use of the graphs, Murali and his students used hypergraphs, a generalization of a graph in which an hyperedge can connect multiple molecules.

"We used hypergraphs to capture the uncertainty that is inherent in reverse engineering gene to gene networks from systems biology datasets," explained Ahsanur Rahman, the lead author on the paper. "We believe hypergraphs are powerful representations for capturing the uncertainty in a network's structure."

They developed reliable algorithms that can discover hyperedges supported by sets of networks. In ongoing research, the scientists seek to use hyperedges to suggest new experiments. By capturing uncertainty in network structure, hyperedges can directly suggest groups of genes for which further experiments may be required in order to precisely discover interaction patterns. Incorporating the data from these experiments might help to refine hyperedges and resolve the interactions among molecules, resulting in fruitful interplay and feedback between computation and experiment.

Murali, and his students Ahsanur Rahman and Christopher L. Poirel, both doctoral candidates, and David L. Badger, a software engineer in Murali's group, all of Blacksburg, Va., and all in the computer science department, used funding from the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation to better understand this uncertainty in these various forms of interactions.

Murali is also the co-director of the Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science's Center for Systems Biology of Engineered Tissues and the associate program director for the computational tissue engineering interdisciplinary graduate education program at Virginia Tech.

Lynn Nystrom | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.vt.edu

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Multi-institutional collaboration uncovers how molecular machines assemble
02.12.2016 | Salk Institute

nachricht Fertilized egg cells trigger and monitor loss of sperm’s epigenetic memory
02.12.2016 | IMBA - Institut für Molekulare Biotechnologie der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften GmbH

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

Im Focus: Molecules change shape when wet

Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water

In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...

Im Focus: Fraunhofer ISE Develops Highly Compact, High Frequency DC/DC Converter for Aviation

The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

UTSA study describes new minimally invasive device to treat cancer and other illnesses

02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product

02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

What do Netflix, Google and planetary systems have in common?

02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>