TFInfer: a tool for probabilistic inference of transcription factor activities.
ABSTRACT TFInfer is a novel open access, standalone tool for genome-wide inference of transcription factor activities from gene expression data. Based on an earlier MATLAB version, the software has now been extended in a number of ways. It has been significantly optimised in terms of performance, and it was given novel functionality, by allowing the user to model both time series and data from multiple independent conditions. With a full documentation and intuitive graphical user interface, together with an in-built data base of yeast and Escherichia coli transcription factors, the software does not require any mathematical or computational expertise to be used effectively.
Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
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ABSTRACT: Many bacteria undergo transitions between environments with differing O₂ availabilities as part of their natural lifestyles and during biotechnological processes. However, the dynamics of adaptation when bacteria experience changes in O₂ availability are understudied. The model bacterium and facultative anaerobe Escherichia coli K-12 provides an ideal system for exploring this process. Time-resolved transcript profiles of E. coli K-12 during the initial phase of transition from anaerobic to micro-aerobic conditions revealed a reprogramming of gene expression consistent with a switch from fermentative to respiratory metabolism. The changes in transcript abundance were matched by changes in the abundances of selected central metabolic proteins. A probabilistic state space model was used to infer the activities of two key regulators, FNR (O₂ sensing) and PdhR (pyruvate sensing). The model implied that both regulators were rapidly inactivated during the transition from an anaerobic to a micro-aerobic environment. Analysis of the external metabolome and protein levels suggested that the cultures transit through different physiological states during the process of adaptation, characterized by the rapid inactivation of pyruvate formate-lyase (PFL), a slower induction of pyruvate dehydrogenase complex (PDHC) activity and transient excretion of pyruvate, consistent with the predicted inactivation of PdhR and FNR. Perturbation of anaerobic steady-state cultures by introduction of a limited supply of O₂ combined with time-resolved transcript, protein and metabolite profiling, and probabilistic modeling has revealed that pyruvate (sensed by PdhR) is a key metabolic signal in coordinating the reprogramming of E. coli K-12 gene expression by working alongside the O₂ sensor FNR during transition from anaerobic to micro-aerobic conditions.PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(9):e25501. · 3.73 Impact Factor