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'Big Data' used to identify new cancer driver genes
In a collaborative study led by Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP), researchers have combined two publicly available 'omics' databases to create a new catalogue of 'cancer drivers'. Cancer drivers are genes that when altered, are responsible for cancer progression. The researchers used cancer mutation and protein structure databases to identify mutations in patient tumors that alter normal protein-protein interaction (PPI) interfaces. The study, published today in PLoS Computational Biology, identified more than 100 novel cancer driver genes and helps explain how tumors driven by the same gene may lead to different patient outcomes.