Assembling everything known about a particular gene

Assume you are interested in collecting all mechanisms that a particular gene is involved in. Using INDRA, it is possible to collect everything curated about the gene in pathway databases and then read all the accessible literature discussing the gene of interest. This knowledge is aggregated as a set of INDRA Statements which can then be assembled into several different model and network formats and possibly shared online.

For the sake of example, assume that the gene of interest is TMEM173.

It is important to use the standard HGNC gene symbol of the gene throughout the example (this information is available on or - abritrary synonyms will not work!

Collect mechanisms from PathwayCommons and the BEL Large Corpus

We first collect Statements from the PathwayCommons database via INDRA’s BioPAX API and then collect Statements from the BEL Large Corpus via INDRA’s BEL API.

from import GeneNetwork

gn = GeneNetwork(['TMEM173'])
biopax_stmts = gn.get_biopax_stmts()
bel_stmts = gn.get_bel_stmts()

at this point biopax_stmts and bel_stmts are two lists of INDRA Statements.

Collect a list of publications that discuss the gene of interest

We next use INDRA’s literature client to find PubMed IDs (PMIDs) that discuss the gene of interest. To find articles that are annotated with the given gene, INDRA first looks up the Entrez ID corresponding to the gene name and then finds associated publications.

from indra import literature

pmids = literature.pubmed_client.get_ids_for_gene('TMEM173')

The variable pmid now contains a list of PMIDs associated with the gene.

Get the full text or abstract corresponding to the publications

Next we use INDRA’s literature client to fetch the full text (if available) or the abstract corresponding to the PMIDs we have just collected.

from indra import literature

paper_contents = {}
for pmid in pmids:
    content, content_type = literature.get_full_text(pmid, 'pmid')
    paper_contents[pmid] = (content, content_type)

We now have a dictionary called paper_contents which stores the content and the content type of each PMID we looked up.

Read the content of the publications

We next run the REACH reading system on the publications. Depending on the content type, different calls need to be made via INDRA’s REACH API.

from indra import literature
from indra.sources import reach

read_offline = True

literature_stmts = []
for pmid, (content, content_type) in paper_contents.items():
    rp = None
    print('Reading %s' % pmid)
    if content_type == 'abstract':
        rp = reach.process_text(content, citation=pmid, offline=read_offline)
    elif content_type == 'pmc_oa_xml':
        rp = reach.process_nxml_str(content, offline=read_offline)
    elif content_type == 'elsevier_xml':
        txt = literature.elsevier_client.extract_text(content)
        if txt:
            rp = reach.process_text(txt, citation=pmid, offline=read_offline)
    if rp is not None:
        literature_stmts += rp.statements

The list literature_stmts now contains the results of all the statements that were read.

Combine all statements and run pre-assembly

from import assemble_corpus

stmts = biopax_stmts + bel_stmts + literature_stmts

stmts = assemble_corpus.map_grounding(stmts)
stmts = assemble_corpus.map_sequence(stmts)
stmts = assemble_corpus.run_preassembly(stmts)

At this point stmts contains a list of Statements collected with grounding, sequences having been mapped, duplicates combined and less specific variants of statements hidden. It is possible to run other filters on the results such as to keep only human genes, remove Statements with ungrounded genes, or to keep only certain types of interactions.

Assemble the statements into a network model

from indra.assemblers import CxAssembler
from indra.databases import ndex_client

cxa = CxAssembler(stmts)
cx_str = cxa.make_model()

We can now upload this network to the Network Data Exchange (NDEx).

ndex_cred = {'user': 'myusername', 'password': 'xxx'}
network_id = ndex_client.create_network(cx_str, ndex_cred)