Statistical and Integrative Approach for Constructing Biological Network Maps

Hiroyuki Kurata (
Natsumi Shimizu (
Kanako Misumi (

Department of Bioscience and Bioinformatics, Kyushu Institute of Technology, 680-4 Kawazu, Iizuka, Fukuoka 820-8502, Japan


A goal of systems biology is to build a concrete biochemical network map, which provides an important instruction to trace the pathways of interest or to understand the mechanism of a biological system. In the postgenomic era, not only the concrete biochemical maps, but also postgenomic maps (mRNA coexpression and protein-protein interaction networks) have been extensively produced. In the biochemical map, the individual reactions are reliable, but the number of the reactions is limited, because molecular biology requires extensive experiments to verify them. By contrast, postgenomic data provide much information regarding interactions, but are coarse-grained. To expand the biochemical network, an intuitional approach, which superposes postgenomic data on the map one by one, has been carried out, but it is not effective when a large amount of the coarse-grained data is handled. In order to effectively integrate such postgenomic interactions into a biochemical map, a statistical approach would be suitable rather than intuition. In this article, we proposed a novel statistical approach that integrates postgenomic interaction networks into the biochemical network, predicting novel pathways. A statistical correlation for such different types of networks identifies functional modules; subsequently the superposition of the different networks on the functional modules predicts inter-modular relations, which are the key pathways to construct a large-scale biochemical network.

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Japanese Society for Bioinformatics