The tapeworm interactome: inferring confidence scored protein-protein interactions from the proteome of Hymenolepis microstoma

Katherine James, Peter D. Olson

Research output: Other contribution

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Reference genome and transcriptome assemblies of helminths have reached a level of completion whereby secondary analyses that rely on accurate gene estimation or syntenic relationships can be now conducted with a high level of confidence. Recent public release of the v.3 assembly of the mouse bile-duct tapeworm, Hymenolepis microstoma, provides chromosome-level characterisation of the genome and a stabilised set of protein coding gene models underpinned by both bioinformatic and empirical data. However, interactome data have not been produced. Conserved protein-protein interactions in other organisms, termed interologs, can be used to transfer interactions between species, allowing systems-level analysis in non-model organisms. Here, we describe a probabilistic, integrated network of interologs for the H. microstoma proteome, based on conserved protein interactions found in eukaryote model species. Almost a third of the 10,139 gene models in the v.3 assembly could be assigned interaction data and assessment of the resulting network indicates that topologically-important proteins are related to essential cellular pathways, and that the network clusters into biologically meaningful components. Moreover, network parameters are similar to those of single-species interaction networks that we constructed in the same way for S. cerevisiae, C. elegans and H. sapiens, demonstrating that information-rich, system-level analyses can be conducted even on species separated by a large phylogenetic distance from the major model organisms from which most protein interaction evidence is based. Using the interolog network, we then focused on sub-networks of interactions assigned to discrete suites of genes of interest, including signalling components and transcription factors, germline 'multipotency' genes, and differentially-expressed genes between larval and adult worms. These analyses not only showed an expected bias toward highly-conserved proteins, such as components of intracellular signal transduction, but in some cases predicted interactions with transcription factors that aid in identifying their target genes. With the completion of key helminth genomes, such systems level analyses can provide an important predictive framework to guide basic and applied research on helminths and will become increasingly informative as protein-protein interaction data accumulate.
Original languageEnglish
TypePosted Content
Media of - the preprint server for Biology
PublisherCold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press
Number of pages35
Publication statusPublished - 13 Jun 2019
Externally publishedYes


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