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  1. Abstract

    Protein structure prediction is an important problem in bioinformatics and has been studied for decades. However, there are still few open-source comprehensive protein structure prediction packages publicly available in the field. In this paper, we present our latest open-source protein tertiary structure prediction system—MULTICOM2, an integration of template-based modeling (TBM) and template-free modeling (FM) methods. The template-based modeling uses sequence alignment tools with deep multiple sequence alignments to search for structural templates, which are much faster and more accurate than MULTICOM1. The template-free (ab initio or de novo) modeling uses the inter-residue distances predicted by DeepDist to reconstruct tertiary structure models without using any known structure as template. In the blind CASP14 experiment, the average TM-score of the models predicted by our server predictor based on the MULTICOM2 system is 0.720 for 58 TBM (regular) domains and 0.514 for 38 FM and FM/TBM (hard) domains, indicating that MULTICOM2 is capable of predicting good tertiary structures across the board. It can predict the correct fold for 76 CASP14 domains (95% regular domains and 55% hard domains) if only one prediction is made for a domain. The success rate is increased to 3% for both regular and hard domains if fivemore »predictions are made per domain. Moreover, the prediction accuracy of the pure template-free structure modeling method on both TBM and FM targets is very close to the combination of template-based and template-free modeling methods. This demonstrates that the distance-based template-free modeling method powered by deep learning can largely replace the traditional template-based modeling method even on TBM targets that TBM methods used to dominate and therefore provides a uniform structure modeling approach to any protein. Finally, on the 38 CASP14 FM and FM/TBM hard domains, MULTICOM2 server predictors (MULTICOM-HYBRID, MULTICOM-DEEP, MULTICOM-DIST) were ranked among the top 20 automated server predictors in the CASP14 experiment. After combining multiple predictors from the same research group as one entry, MULTICOM-HYBRID was ranked no. 5. The source code of MULTICOM2 is freely available at

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  2. Abstract

    This paper describes outcomes of the 2019 Cryo-EM Model Challenge. The goals were to (1) assess the quality of models that can be produced from cryogenic electron microscopy (cryo-EM) maps using current modeling software, (2) evaluate reproducibility of modeling results from different software developers and users and (3) compare performance of current metrics used for model evaluation, particularly Fit-to-Map metrics, with focus on near-atomic resolution. Our findings demonstrate the relatively high accuracy and reproducibility of cryo-EM models derived by 13 participating teams from four benchmark maps, including three forming a resolution series (1.8 to 3.1 Å). The results permit specific recommendations to be made about validating near-atomic cryo-EM structures both in the context of individual experiments and structure data archives such as the Protein Data Bank. We recommend the adoption of multiple scoring parameters to provide full and objective annotation and assessment of the model, reflective of the observed cryo-EM map density.

  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available May 21, 2023
  4. Free, publicly-accessible full text available April 13, 2023
  5. Abstract Background Estimation of the accuracy (quality) of protein structural models is important for both prediction and use of protein structural models. Deep learning methods have been used to integrate protein structure features to predict the quality of protein models. Inter-residue distances are key information for predicting protein’s tertiary structures and therefore have good potentials to predict the quality of protein structural models. However, few methods have been developed to fully take advantage of predicted inter-residue distance maps to estimate the accuracy of a single protein structural model. Result We developed an attentive 2D convolutional neural network (CNN) with channel-wise attention to take only a raw difference map between the inter-residue distance map calculated from a single protein model and the distance map predicted from the protein sequence as input to predict the quality of the model. The network comprises multiple convolutional layers, batch normalization layers, dense layers, and Squeeze-and-Excitation blocks with attention to automatically extract features relevant to protein model quality from the raw input without using any expert-curated features. We evaluated DISTEMA’s capability of selecting the best models for CASP13 targets in terms of ranking loss of GDT-TS score. The ranking loss of DISTEMA is 0.079, lower thanmore »several state-of-the-art single-model quality assessment methods. Conclusion This work demonstrates that using raw inter-residue distance information with deep learning can predict the quality of protein structural models reasonably well. DISTEMA is freely at« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available March 1, 2023
  6. Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 1, 2023
  7. Abstract Background Driven by deep learning, inter-residue contact/distance prediction has been significantly improved and substantially enhanced ab initio protein structure prediction. Currently, most of the distance prediction methods classify inter-residue distances into multiple distance intervals instead of directly predicting real-value distances. The output of the former has to be converted into real-value distances to be used in tertiary structure prediction. Results To explore the potentials of predicting real-value inter-residue distances, we develop a multi-task deep learning distance predictor (DeepDist) based on new residual convolutional network architectures to simultaneously predict real-value inter-residue distances and classify them into multiple distance intervals. Tested on 43 CASP13 hard domains, DeepDist achieves comparable performance in real-value distance prediction and multi-class distance prediction. The average mean square error (MSE) of DeepDist’s real-value distance prediction is 0.896 Å 2 when filtering out the predicted distance ≥ 16 Å, which is lower than 1.003 Å 2 of DeepDist’s multi-class distance prediction. When distance predictions are converted into contact predictions at 8 Å threshold (the standard threshold in the field), the precision of top L/5 and L/2 contact predictions of DeepDist’s multi-class distance prediction is 79.3% and 66.1%, respectively, higher than 78.6% and 64.5% of its real-value distance prediction and the best resultsmore »in the CASP13 experiment. Conclusions DeepDist can predict inter-residue distances well and improve binary contact prediction over the existing state-of-the-art methods. Moreover, the predicted real-value distances can be directly used to reconstruct protein tertiary structures better than multi-class distance predictions due to the lower MSE. Finally, we demonstrate that predicting the real-value distance map and multi-class distance map at the same time performs better than predicting real-value distances alone.« less
  8. Abstract The inter-residue contact prediction and deep learning showed the promise to improve the estimation of protein model accuracy (EMA) in the 13th Critical Assessment of Protein Structure Prediction (CASP13). To further leverage the improved inter-residue distance predictions to enhance EMA, during the 2020 CASP14 experiment, we integrated several new inter-residue distance features with the existing model quality assessment features in several deep learning methods to predict the quality of protein structural models. According to the evaluation of performance in selecting the best model from the models of CASP14 targets, our three multi-model predictors of estimating model accuracy (MULTICOM-CONSTRUCT, MULTICOM-AI, and MULTICOM-CLUSTER) achieve the averaged loss of 0.073, 0.079, and 0.081, respectively, in terms of the global distance test score (GDT-TS). The three methods are ranked first, second, and third out of all 68 CASP14 predictors. MULTICOM-DEEP, the single-model predictor of estimating model accuracy (EMA), is ranked within top 10 among all the single-model EMA methods according to GDT-TS score loss. The results demonstrate that inter-residue distance features are valuable inputs for deep learning to predict the quality of protein structural models. However, larger training datasets and better ways of leveraging inter-residue distance information are needed to fully explore itsmore »potentials.« less