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MPTM: A tool for mining protein post-translational modifications from literature

Journal of bioinformatics and computational biology | 7 Oct 2017

D Sun, M Wang and A Li
Due to the importance of post-translational modifications (PTMs) in human health and diseases, PTMs are regularly reported in the biomedical literature. However, the continuing and rapid pace of expansion of this literature brings a huge challenge for researchers and database curators. Therefore, there is a pressing need to aid them in identifying relevant PTM information more efficiently by using a text mining system. So far, only a few web servers are available for mining information of a very limited number of PTMs, which are based on simple pattern matching or pre-defined rules. In our work, in order to help researchers and database curators easily find and retrieve PTM information from available text, we have developed a text mining tool called MPTM, which extracts and organizes valuable knowledge about 11 common PTMs from abstracts in PubMed by using relations extracted from dependency parse trees and a heuristic algorithm. It is the first web server that provides literature mining service for hydroxylation, myristoylation and GPI-anchor. The tool is also used to find new publications on PTMs from PubMed and uncovers potential PTM information by large-scale text analysis. MPTM analyzes text sentences to identify protein names including substrates and protein-interacting enzymes, and automatically associates them with the UniProtKB protein entry. To facilitate further investigation, it also retrieves PTM-related information, such as human diseases, Gene Ontology terms and organisms from the input text and related databases. In addition, an online database (MPTMDB) with extracted PTM information and a local MPTM Lite package are provided on the MPTM website. MPTM is freely available online at and the source codes are hosted on GitHub: .
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Amino acid, Posttranslational modification
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