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Nucleic Acids Res. 2011 Jan;39(Database issue):D1060-6. doi: 10.1093/nar/gkq1037. Epub 2010 Nov 10.

PROMISCUOUS: a database for network-based drug-repositioning.

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Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Institute for Physiology, Structural Bioinformatics Group, Lindenberger Weg 80, 13125 Berlin, Germany.


The procedure of drug approval is time-consuming, costly and risky. Accidental findings regarding multi-specificity of approved drugs led to block-busters in new indication areas. Therefore, the interest in systematically elucidating new areas of application for known drugs is rising. Furthermore, the knowledge, understanding and prediction of so-called off-target effects allow a rational approach to the understanding of side-effects. With PROMISCUOUS we provide an exhaustive set of drugs (25,000), including withdrawn or experimental drugs, annotated with drug-protein and protein-protein relationships (21,500/104,000) compiled from public resources via text and data mining including manual curation. Measures of structural similarity for drugs as well as known side-effects can be easily connected to protein-protein interactions to establish and analyse networks responsible for multi-pharmacology. This network-based approach can provide a starting point for drug-repositioning. PROMISCUOUS is publicly available at

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