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Curr Pharm Des. 2012;18(30):4619-29.

Protein-protein interactions: network analysis and applications in drug discovery.

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Department of Medical Protein Research, VIB, Ghent, Belgium.


Physical interactions among proteins constitute the backbone of cellular function, making them an attractive source of therapeutic targets. Although the challenges associated with targeting protein-protein interactions (PPIs) -in particular with small molecules - are considerable, a growing number of functional PPI modulators is being reported and clinically evaluated. An essential starting point for PPI inhibitor screening or design projects is the generation of a detailed map of the human interactome and the interactions between human and pathogen proteins. Different routes to produce these biological networks are being combined, including literature curation and computational methods. Experimental approaches to map PPIs mainly rely on the yeast two-hybrid (Y2H) technology, which have recently shown to produce reliable protein networks. However, other genetic and biochemical methods will be essential to increase both coverage and resolution of current protein networks in order to increase their utility towards the identification of novel disease-related proteins and PPIs, and their potential use as therapeutic targets.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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