Signal reachability facilitates characterization of probabilistic signaling networks

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Background: Studying biological networks is of extreme importance in understanding cellular functions. These networks model interactions between molecules in each cell. A large volume of research has been done to uncover different characteristics of biological networks, such as large-scale organization, node centrality and network robustness. Nevertheless, the vast majority of research done in this area assume that biological networks have deterministic topologies. Biological interactions are however probabilistic events that may or may not appear at different cells or even in the same cell at different times. Results: In this paper, we present novel methods for characterizing probabilistic signaling networks. Our methods do this by computing the probability that a signal propagates successfully from receptor to reporter genes through interactions in the network. We characterize such networks with respect to (i) centrality of individual nodes, (ii) stability of the entire network, and (iii) important functions served by the network. We use these methods to characterize major H. sapiens signaling networks including Wnt, ErbB and MAPK.




Gabr, H., & Kahveci, T. (2015). Signal reachability facilitates characterization of probabilistic signaling networks. BMC Bioinformatics, 16(17).

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