Prediction of over 30 million human kinase-substrate interactions now
available at PhosphoNET website
VANCOUVER, BC, Feb. 23 /PRNewswire/ - Kinexus Bioinformatics Corporation, a
world-leader in molecular intelligence research, announced another
major expansion in its PhosphoNET KnowledgeBase (www.phosphonet.ca) for the study of cell communication systems. This open access, online
resource for the scientific community now features data on over 93,000
experimentally-confirmed human phosphorylation sites (P-sites) and
560,000 additional P-sites predicted with a new algorithm. PhosphoNET
also includes prediction of which kinases individually target each of
over 650,000 human P-sites, and how well these P-site are conserved in
over 20 other different organisms.
The human genome encodes at least 516 protein kinases that regulate each
other and over 22,500 other diverse proteins to coordinate all cellular
operations. These kinases are unique networking enzymes that function
by tagging target proteins at specific P-sites with phosphates, which
act as molecular on/off switches. Protein kinases are well recognized
by the pharmaceutical and biotech industry as highly productive targets
for drug development with application to over 400 human diseases.
Cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer's disease are just a few of many examples
of disorders that arise from cellular miscommunication.
Last year, scientists at Kinexus and their collaborators in the
Mathematics of Information Technology and Complex Systems (MITACS)
groups at the University of British Columbia and Simon Fraser
University cracked the substrate specificity codes for about 500 human
protein kinases. Building on this earlier success, the team then
developed another algorithm that now accurately predicts the locations
of putative P-sites in all of the proteins encoded by the human genome.
This major advancement has permitted Kinexus to draft the first high
resolution map of the molecular intelligence system of human cells.
Further, through application of evolutionary analyses of highly
conserved P-sites in very different organisms, Kinexus has been able to
define those connections that are the most critical to the functioning
of cells. The company is using this information to produce novel
antibody probes for tracking key P-sites with its protein microarray
technology for application in disease biomarker identification.
"After the sequencing of the human genome a decade ago, the next major
challenge was to identify how the various proteins are regulated and
how they interact," commented Dr. Steven Pelech, President and Chief
Scientific Officer of Kinexus and a professor in the Department of
Medicine at the University of British Columbia. "Progress on this front
has been very slow, but PhosphoNET can serve as a valuable tool to
guide biomedical researchers in more fruitful directions to define
biomarkers for disease diagnosis and kinase drug targets for
development of new treatments."
Dr. Pelech added, "We believe that the approaches taken at Kinexus to
establish protein kinase specificities and the identification of their
targets in humans can be applied broadly to rapidly elucidate the
complex architectures of protein kinase-based communications systems
for any animal, plant or microbe for which the complete genome sequence
is known. Our next goal is to develop an atlas of protein
phosphorylation network maps that are tissue and cell specific. These
cell signalling maps could guide a significant portion of biomedical
research over the next decade."
For more than 11 years, Kinexus has been a unique provider of proteomics
services to academic and industrial laboratories to track protein
kinases and their phosphoprotein targets in experimental tissue and
cell specimens. The company has developed a diverse panel of
microarrays that can monitor the presence and activity levels of
hundreds of kinases and their targets, their interactions, and the
effects of promising drug candidates. Kinexus is a private,
biotechnology company engaged in the research and development of
innovative technologies to track and control signalling proteins in
molecular communication networks. The application of this knowledge
positions Kinexus and its clients for improved disease diagnosis and
personalized drug therapies to improve human health.
SOURCE Kinexus Bioinformatics Corporation