Dasty2, an Ajax protein DAS client.

Proteomics Services Team, European Bioinformatics Institute, EMBL, Hinxton, Cambridge CB10 1SD, UK.
Bioinformatics (Impact Factor: 5.47). 10/2008; 24(18):2119-21. DOI: 10.1093/bioinformatics/btn387
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Dasty2 is a highly interactive web client integrating protein sequence annotations from currently more than 40 sources, using the distributed annotation system (DAS). AVAILABILITY: Dasty2 is an open source tool freely available under the terms of the Apache License 2.0, publicly available at

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    ABSTRACT: The interaction between biological researchers and the bioinformatics tools they use is still hampered by incomplete interoperability between such tools. To ensure interoperability initiatives are effectively deployed, end-user applications need to be aware of, and support, best practices and standards. Here, we report on an initiative in which software developers and genome biologists came together to explore and raise awareness of these issues: BioHackathon 2009. Developers in attendance came from diverse backgrounds, with experts in Web services, workflow tools, text mining and visualization. Genome biologists provided expertise and exemplar data from the domains of sequence and pathway analysis and glyco-informatics. One goal of the meeting was to evaluate the ability to address real world use cases in these domains using the tools that the developers represented. This resulted in i) a workflow to annotate 100,000 sequences from an invertebrate species; ii) an integrated system for analysis of the transcription factor binding sites (TFBSs) enriched based on differential gene expression data obtained from a microarray experiment; iii) a workflow to enumerate putative physical protein interactions among enzymes in a metabolic pathway using protein structure data; iv) a workflow to analyze glyco-gene-related diseases by searching for human homologs of glyco-genes in other species, such as fruit flies, and retrieving their phenotype-annotated SNPs. Beyond deriving prototype solutions for each use-case, a second major purpose of the BioHackathon was to highlight areas of insufficiency. We discuss the issues raised by our exploration of the problem/solution space, concluding that there are still problems with the way Web services are modeled and annotated, including: i) the absence of several useful data or analysis functions in the Web service "space"; ii) the lack of documentation of methods; iii) lack of compliance with the SOAP/WSDL specification among and between various programming-language libraries; and iv) incompatibility between various bioinformatics data formats. Although it was still difficult to solve real world problems posed to the developers by the biological researchers in attendance because of these problems, we note the promise of addressing these issues within a semantic framework.
    Journal of biomedical semantics. 08/2011; 2:4.
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    ABSTRACT: Improvements in nucleotide sequencing technology have resulted in an ever increasing number of nucleotide and protein sequences being deposited in databases. Unfortunately, the ability to manually classify and annotate these sequences cannot keep pace with their rapid generation, resulting in an increased bias toward unannotated sequence. Automatic annotation tools can help redress the balance. There are a number of different groups working to produce protein signatures that describe protein families, functional domains or conserved sites within related groups of proteins. Protein signature databases include CATH-Gene3D, HAMAP, PANTHER, Pfam, PIRSF, PRINTS, ProDom, PROSITE, SMART, SUPERFAMILY, and TIGRFAMs. Their approaches range from characterising small conserved motifs that can identify members of a family or subfamily, to the use of hidden Markov models that describe the conservation of residues over entire domains or whole proteins. To increase their value as protein classification tools, protein signatures from these 11 databases have been combined into one, powerful annotation tool: the InterPro database ( (Hunter et al., Nucleic Acids Res 37:D211-D215, 2009). InterPro is an open-source protein resource used for the automatic annotation of proteins, and is scalable to the analysis of entire new genomes through the use of a downloadable version of InterProScan, which can be incorporated into an existing local pipeline. InterPro provides structural information from PDB (Kouranov et al., Nucleic Acids Res 34:D302-D305, 2006), its classification in CATH (Cuff et al., Nucleic Acids Res 37:D310-D314, 2009) and SCOP (Andreeva et al., Nucleic Acids Res 36:D419-D425, 2008), as well as homology models from ModBase (Pieper et al., Nucleic Acids Res 37:D347-D354, 2009) and SwissModel (Kiefer et al., Nucleic Acids Res 37:D387-D392, 2009), allowing a direct comparison of the protein signatures with the available structural information. This chapter reviews the signature methods found in the InterPro database, and provides an overview of the InterPro resource itself.
    Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.) 01/2011; 694:37-47. · 1.29 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: MOTIVATION: Dasty3 is a highly interactive and extensible Web-based framework. It provides a rich Application Programming Interface upon which it is possible to develop specialized clients capable of retrieving information from DAS sources as well as from data providers not using the DAS protocol. Dasty3 provides significant improvements on previous Web-based frameworks and is implemented using the 1.6 DAS specification. AVAILABILITY: Dasty3 is an open-source tool freely available at under the terms of the GNU General public license. Source and documentation can be found at CONTACT:
    Bioinformatics 07/2011; 27(18):2616-7. · 5.47 Impact Factor

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