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Keywords:

  • Membrane protein;
  • topology;
  • consensus prediction
  • PCT, partial consensus topology;
  • TMH, transmembrane helix

Abstract

We have developed a method to reliably identify partial membrane protein topologies using the consensus of five topology prediction methods. When evaluated on a test set of experimentally characterized proteins, we find that approximately 90% of the partial consensus topologies are correctly predicted in membrane proteins from prokaryotic as well as eukaryotic organisms. Whole-genome analysis reveals that a reliable partial consensus topology can be predicted for ∼70% of all membrane proteins in a typical bacterial genome and for ∼55% of all membrane proteins in a typical eukaryotic genome. The average fraction of sequence length covered by a partial consensus topology is 44% for the prokaryotic proteins and 17% for the eukaryotic proteins in our test set, and similar numbers are found when the algorithm is applied to whole genomes. Reliably predicted partial topologies may simplify experimental determinations of membrane protein topology.