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Improve the Prediction of RNA-Binding Residues Using Structural Neighbours

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The interactions between RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) with RNA play key roles in managing some of the cell's basic functions. The identification and prediction of RNA binding sites is important for understanding the RNAbinding mechanism. Computational approaches are being developed to predict RNA-binding residues based on the sequence- or structure-derived features. To achieve higher prediction accuracy, improvements on current prediction methods are necessary. We identified that the structural neighbors of RNA-binding and non-RNA-binding residues have different amino acid compositions. Combining this structure-derived feature with evolutionary (PSSM) and other structural information (secondary structure and solvent accessibility) significantly improves the predictions over existing methods. Using a multiple linear regression approach and 6-fold cross validation, our best model can achieve an overall correct rate of 87.8% and MCC of 0.47, with a specificity of 93.4%, correctly predict 52.4% of the RNA-binding residues for a dataset containing 107 non-homologous RNA-binding proteins. Compared with existing methods, including the amino acid compositions of structure neighbors lead to clearly improvement. A web server was developed for predicting RNA binding residues in a protein sequence (or structure), which is available at http://jeele.go.3322.org/RNA/.

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  • Protein & Peptide Letters publishes short papers in all important aspects of protein and peptide research, including structural studies, recombinant expression, function, synthesis, enzymology, immunology, molecular modeling, drug design etc. Manuscripts must have a significant element of novelty, timeliness and urgency that merit rapid publication. Reports of crystallisation, and preliminary structure determinations of biologically important proteins are acceptable. Purely theoretical papers are also acceptable provided they provide new insight into the principles of protein/peptide structure and function.
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