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Predicting the host of influenza viruses based on the word vector.

Predicting the host of influenza viruses based on the word vector.
Author Information (click to view)

Xu B, Tan Z, Li K, Jiang T, Peng Y,


Xu B, Tan Z, Li K, Jiang T, Peng Y, (click to view)

Xu B, Tan Z, Li K, Jiang T, Peng Y,

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PeerJ 2017 07 185() e3579 doi 10.7717/peerj.3579
Abstract

Newly emerging influenza viruses continue to threaten public health. A rapid determination of the host range of newly discovered influenza viruses would assist in early assessment of their risk. Here, we attempted to predict the host of influenza viruses using the Support Vector Machine (SVM) classifier based on the word vector, a new representation and feature extraction method for biological sequences. The results show that the length of the word within the word vector, the sequence type (DNA or protein) and the species from which the sequences were derived for generating the word vector all influence the performance of models in predicting the host of influenza viruses. In nearly all cases, the models built on the surface proteins hemagglutinin (HA) and neuraminidase (NA) (or their genes) produced better results than internal influenza proteins (or their genes). The best performance was achieved when the model was built on the HA gene based on word vectors (words of three-letters long) generated from DNA sequences of the influenza virus. This results in accuracies of 99.7% for avian, 96.9% for human and 90.6% for swine influenza viruses. Compared to the method of sequence homology best-hit searches using the Basic Local Alignment Search Tool (BLAST), the word vector-based models still need further improvements in predicting the host of influenza A viruses.

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