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Optimal selection of molecular descriptors for antimicrobial peptides classification: an evolutionary feature weighting approach.

A new interesting article has been published in BMC Genomics. 2018 Sep 24;19(Suppl 7):672. doi: 10.1186/s12864-018-5030-1. and titled:

Optimal selection of molecular descriptors for antimicrobial peptides classification: an evolutionary feature weighting approach.

Authors of this article are:
Beltran JA Aguilera-Mendoza L Brizuela CA.

A summary of the article is shown below:
BACKGROUND: Antimicrobial peptides are a promising alternative for combating pathogens resistant to conventional antibiotics. Computer-assisted peptide discovery strategies are necessary to automatically assess a significant amount of data by generating models that efficiently classify what an antimicrobial peptide is, before its evaluation in the wet lab. Model’s performance depends on the selection of molecular descriptors for which an efficient and effective approach has recently been proposed. Unfortunately, how to adapt this method to the selection of molecular descriptors for the classification of antimicrobial peptides and the performance it can achieve, have only preliminary been explored.RESULTS: We propose an adaptation of this successful feature selection approach for the weighting of molecular descriptors and assess its performance. The evaluation is conducted on six high-quality benchmark datasets that have previously been used for the empirical evaluation of state-of-art antimicrobial prediction tools in an unbiased manner. The results indicate that our approach substantially reduces the number of required molecular descriptors, improving, at the same time, the performance of classification with respect to using all molecular descriptors. Our models also outperform state-of-art prediction tools for the classification of antimicrobial and antibacterial peptides.CONCLUSIONS: The proposed methodology is an efficient approach for the development of models to classify antimicrobial peptides. Particularly in the generation of models for discrimination against a specific antimicrobial activity, such as antibacterial. One of our future directions is aimed at using the obtained classifier to search for antimicrobial peptides in various transcriptomes.

Check out the article’s website on Pubmed for more information:



This article is a good source of information and a good way to become familiar with topics such as: Antimicrobial peptides;Classification;Feature weighting;Molecular descriptors;Multi-objective evolutionary algorithm;Peptide representation.

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