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Bioinformatics. 2012 Jan 1;28(1):56-62. doi: 10.1093/bioinformatics/btr614. Epub 2011 Nov 8.

Epigenetic priors for identifying active transcription factor binding sites.

Author information

  • 1Institute for Molecular Bioscience, The University of Queensland, Brisbane QLD 4072, Australia.

Abstract

MOTIVATION:

Accurate knowledge of the genome-wide binding of transcription factors in a particular cell type or under a particular condition is necessary for understanding transcriptional regulation. Using epigenetic data such as histone modification and DNase I, accessibility data has been shown to improve motif-based in silico methods for predicting such binding, but this approach has not yet been fully explored.

RESULTS:

We describe a probabilistic method for combining one or more tracks of epigenetic data with a standard DNA sequence motif model to improve our ability to identify active transcription factor binding sites (TFBSs). We convert each data type into a position-specific probabilistic prior and combine these priors with a traditional probabilistic motif model to compute a log-posterior odds score. Our experiments, using histone modifications H3K4me1, H3K4me3, H3K9ac and H3K27ac, as well as DNase I sensitivity, show conclusively that the log-posterior odds score consistently outperforms a simple binary filter based on the same data. We also show that our approach performs competitively with a more complex method, CENTIPEDE, and suggest that the relative simplicity of the log-posterior odds scoring method makes it an appealing and very general method for identifying functional TFBSs on the basis of DNA and epigenetic evidence.

AVAILABILITY AND IMPLEMENTATION:

FIMO, part of the MEME Suite software toolkit, now supports log-posterior odds scoring using position-specific priors for motif search. A web server and source code are available at http://meme.nbcr.net. Utilities for creating priors are at http://research.imb.uq.edu.au/t.bailey/SD/Cuellar2011.

CONTACT:

t.bailey@uq.edu.au

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

PMID:
22072382
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3244768
Free PMC Article

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