Thesis defence of Joan Planas: On the study of 3D structure of proteins for developing new algorithms to complete the interactome and cell signalling networks

Today at 11:00, Joan Planas, member of the Structural Bioinformatics Group of GRIB (IMIM-UPF) will defend his thesis in the Auditorium of PRBB.


Proteins are indispensable players in virtually all biological events. The functions of proteins are determined by their three dimensional (3D) structure and coordinated through intricate networks of protein-protein interactions (PPIs). Hence, a deep comprehension of such networks turns out to be crucial for understanding the cellular biology. Computational approaches have become critical tools for analysing PPI networks. In silico methods take advantage of the existing PPI knowledge to both predict new interactions and predict the function of proteins. Regarding the task of predicting PPIs, several methods have been already developed. However, recent findings demonstrate that such methods could take advantage of the knowledge on non-interacting protein pairs (NIPs). On the task of predicting the function of proteins,the Guilt-by-Association (GBA) principle can be exploited to extend the functional annotation of proteins over PPI networks. In this thesis, a new algorithm for PPI prediction and a protocol to complete cell signalling networks are presented. iLoops is a method that uses NIP data and structural information of proteins to predict the binding fate of protein pairs. A novel protocol for completing signalling networks –a task related to predicting the function of a protein, has also been developed. The protocol is based on the application of GBA principle in PPI networks.

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