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PeerJ. 2018 Feb 5;6:e4352. doi: 10.7717/peerj.4352. eCollection 2018.

Complex versus simple models: ion-channel cardiac toxicity prediction.

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Division of Pharmacy, University of Manchester, Manchester, United Kingdom.


There is growing interest in applying detailed mathematical models of the heart for ion-channel related cardiac toxicity prediction. However, a debate as to whether such complex models are required exists. Here an assessment in the predictive performance between two established large-scale biophysical cardiac models and a simple linear model Bnet was conducted. Three ion-channel data-sets were extracted from literature. Each compound was designated a cardiac risk category using two different classification schemes based on information within CredibleMeds. The predictive performance of each model within each data-set for each classification scheme was assessed via a leave-one-out cross validation. Overall the Bnet model performed equally as well as the leading cardiac models in two of the data-sets and outperformed both cardiac models on the latest. These results highlight the importance of benchmarking complex versus simple models but also encourage the development of simple models.


Cardiac safety simulator; Cardiac toxicity; CiPA; Ion-channels; Mathematical models; Pharmacology

Conflict of interest statement

The author declares there are no competing interests.

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