A methodology for predicting tissue-specific metabolic roles of receptors applied to subcutaneous adipose

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The human biological system uses ‘inter-organ’ communication to achieve a state of homeostasis. This communication occurs through the response of receptors, located on target organs, to the binding of secreted ligands from source organs. Albeit years of research, the roles these receptors play in tissues is only partially understood. This work presents a new methodology based on the enrichment analysis scores of co-expression networks fed into support vector machines (SVMs) and k-NN classifiers to predict the tissue-specific metabolic roles of receptors. The approach is primarily based on the detection of coordination patterns of receptors expression. These patterns and the enrichment analysis scores of their co-expression networks were used to analyse ~ 700 receptors and predict metabolic roles of receptors in subcutaneous adipose. To facilitate supervised learning, a list of known metabolic and non-metabolic receptors was constructed using a semi-supervised approach following literature-based verification. Our approach confirms that pathway enrichment scores are good signatures for correctly classifying the metabolic receptors in adipose. We also show that the k-NN method outperforms the SVM method in classifying metabolic receptors. Finally, we predict novel metabolic roles of receptors. These predictions can enhance biological understanding and the development of new receptor-targeting metabolic drugs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number19535
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - 11 Nov 2020

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© 2020, The Author(s).

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