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Biochimie. 2011 Mar;93(3):489-96. doi: 10.1016/j.biochi.2010.10.022. Epub 2010 Nov 12.

Prediction and analysis of protein palmitoylation sites.

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Institute of Systems Biology, Shanghai University, Shanghai, China.


Palmitoylation is a universal and important lipid modification, involving a series of basic cellular processes, such as membrane trafficking, protein stability and protein aggregation. With the avalanche of new protein sequences generated in the post genomic era, it is highly desirable to develop computational methods for rapidly and effectively identifying the potential palmitoylation sites of uncharacterized proteins so as to timely provide useful information for revealing the mechanism of protein palmitoylation. By using the Incremental Feature Selection approach based on amino acid factors, conservation, disorder feature, and specific features of palmitoylation site, a new predictor named IFS-Palm was developed in this regard. The overall success rate thus achieved by jackknife test on a newly constructed benchmark dataset was 90.65%. It was shown via an in-depth analysis that palmitoylation was intimately correlated with the feature of the upstream residue directly adjacent to cysteine site as well as the conservation of amino acid cysteine. Meanwhile, the protein disorder region might also play an import role in the post-translational modification. These findings may provide useful insights for revealing the mechanisms of palmitoylation.

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