ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202202.0046.v1
Subject: Chemistry And Materials Science, Medicinal Chemistry Keywords: Cancer; tumor homing peptide; in silico drug discovery; complex network; chemical space network; centrality measure; similarity searching, group fusion; motif discovery; starPep toolbox software
Online: 3 February 2022 (10:14:05 CET)
Peptide-based drugs are promising anticancer candidates due to their biocompatibility, and low toxicity. Particularly, tumor homing peptides (THPs) have the ability to bind specifically to can-cer cells receptors and tumor vasculature. Despite their potential to develop antitumor drugs, there are few available prediction tools to assist the discovery of new THPs. Two webservers based on machine learning models are currently active, the TumorHPD (https://webs.iiitd.edu.in/raghava/tumorhpd) and the THPep (http://codes.bio/thpep), and more recently the SCMTHP (SCMTHP (pmlabstack.pythonanywhere.com), based on scoring card method. Herein, a novel method based on network science and similarity searching implemented in the starPep toolbox (http://mobiosd-hub.com/starpep/) is presented for THPs discovery. The approach leverages from exploring the structural space of THPs with Chemical Space Networks (CSNs) and from applying centrality measures to identify the most relevant and non-redundant THPs sequences within the CSN. Such THPs were considered as queries (Qs) for multi-query similarity searches that applies a group fusion (MAX-SIM rule) model. The resulting multi-query similarity searching models (SSMs) were validated with three benchmarking datasets of THPs/non-THPs. Predictions achieved accuracies ranged from 92.64 to 99.18% and Matthews Correlation Coefficients between 0.894-0.98, outperforming state-of-the-art predictors. The best model was applied to repurpose AMPs from the starPep database as THPs, which were subse-quently optimized for the TH activity. Finally, 54 promising THP leads were discovered, and their sequences were analyzed to encounter novel motifs. These results demonstrate the potential of CSNs and multi-query similarity searching for a rapid and accurate identification of THPs.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202303.0322.v1
Subject: Computer Science And Mathematics, Computer Science Keywords: Hemolytic peptide; Network science; Half-Space Proximal Networks; Metadata Networks; Visual mining; Cluster analysis; Motif discovery; StarPep toolbox; Peptide drug discovery
Online: 17 March 2023 (10:05:05 CET)
Peptides are promising drug development frameworks thanks to their high target selectivity, tolerability and relatively low production cost. However, despite the fact that several thousand potentially therapeutic peptides reported, only sixty have arrived at the market. This concerning low proportion is partially explained by undesired properties such as peptide-induced hemolytic activity. Hence, we aim to get a better insight into the chemical space of hemolytic peptides using a novel approach based on network science and interactive data mining as an alternative to design more effective peptide drugs with low hemolytic activity. Metadata networks (METNs) were used to characterize and find general patterns associated to hemolytic peptides, whereas Half-Space Proximal Networks (HSPNs), created using five different two-way dissimilarity measures, represented the hemolytic peptide space. Then, using the best candidate HSPNs, we extracted various scaffolds that capture information of almost all the chemical space but avoiding peptide overrepresentation. Such scaffolds can have many applications, such as training accurate ML-based prediction models, constructing one-class multi-query similarity searching models and characterizing the diversity of hemolytic peptides using a manageable set of peptides. Finally, by means of an alignment-free approach, we reported 47 putative hemolytic motifs, which might provide hints about the mechanisms of hemolysis and can also be used as toxic signatures when developing novel peptide-based drugs.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202303.0193.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Pharmacology And Toxicology Keywords: Antibiofilm peptide; chemical space; StarPep toolbox; complex network; centrality measure; motif discovery
Online: 10 March 2023 (09:36:30 CET)
Microbial biofilms cause several environmental and industrial issues, even on the human health. Although they have represented a threaten due to their resistance to antibiotics, there are currently no approved antibiofilm agents for clinical treatments. The multi-functionality of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) including the antibiofilm activity and their potentialities to target multiple mi-crobes motivated the synthesis of AMP relatives for developing antibiofilm agents for clinical purposes. Antibiofilm peptides (ABFPs) have been organized in databases that allowed the building of prediction tools which have assisted in the discovery/design of new antibiofilm agents. However, the complex network approach has been explored yet as an assistant tool for this aim. Herein, a kind of similarity networks, called the Half-Space Proximal Network (HSPN) is applied to represent/analyse the chemical space of the ABFPs aimed to identify promising scaf-folds for the development of next generation antimicrobials, able to target both planktonic and biofilm microbial forms. Such analyses also considered the metadata associated to the ABFPs such as origin, other activities, targets, etc. in which the relationships were projected by multilayer networks called metadata networks (METNs). From the complex networks mining, a reduced but informative set of 66 ABFPs representing the original antibiofilm space was extracted. This subset retained from the most central to atypical ABFPs, having some of them, desired properties for developing next generation antimicrobials. So, this subset is advisable for assisting the search/design both new antibiofilm/antimicrobial agents. The provided ABFP motifs list, dis-covered within the HSPN communities, is also useful for the same purpose.