The University of Massachusetts Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Seminar: Jason Papin, Virgina, title: "Predicting biology with reconciled human and rat metabolic networks"


Tuesday, April 11, 2017 - 11:30am


LGRT 201



The comparative analysis of metabolic networks can provide mechanistic understanding of species-specific differences of metabolism and associated biomarkers and drug targets for various applications. The laboratory rat has been used as a surrogate to study human biology for more than a century. We have generated the first genome-scale reconstruction of Rattus norvegicus metabolism, iRno, and a significantly improved reconstruction of human metabolism, iHsa. Comparative analyses with these models captured metabolic features that distinguish rats from humans including vitamin C and bile acid synthesis pathways. After reconciling network differences between iRno and iHsa, we integrate toxicogenomics data from rat and human hepatocytes, to generate biomarker predictions in response to 76 drugs. We validate comparative predictions for xanthine derivatives with new experimental data and literature-based evidence delineating metabolite biomarkers unique to humans. Our results provide mechanistic insights into species-specific metabolism and facilitate the selection of biomarkers consistent with rat and human biology. These models can serve as powerful computational platforms for contextualizing experimental data and making functional predictions for clinical and basic science applications.

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