Prioritisation and network analysis of Crohn's disease susceptibility genes.
Muraro D., Lauffenburger DA., Simmons A.
Recent Genome-Wide Association Studies (GWAS) have revealed numerous Crohn's disease susceptibility genes and a key challenge now is in understanding how risk polymorphisms in associated genes might contribute to development of this disease. For a gene to contribute to disease phenotype, its risk variant will likely adversely communicate with a variety of other gene products to result in dysregulation of common signaling pathways. A vital challenge is to elucidate pathways of potentially greatest influence on pathological behaviour, in a manner recognizing how multiple relevant genes may yield integrative effect. In this work we apply mathematical analysis of networks involving the list of recently described Crohn's susceptibility genes, to prioritise pathways in relation to their potential development of this disease. Prioritisation was performed by applying a text mining and a diffusion based method (GRAIL, GPEC). Prospective biological significance of the resulting prioritised list of proteins is highlighted by changes in their gene expression levels in Crohn's patients intestinal tissue in comparison with healthy donors.