Protein-protein interactions (PPIs) constitute one of the most crucial conditions to sustain life in living organisms. To study PPI in Arabidopsis thaliana we have developed AtPIN, a database and web interface for searching and building interaction networks based on publicly available protein-protein interaction datasets.
All interactions were divided into experimentally demonstrated or predicted. The PPIs in the AtPIN database present a cellular compartment classification (C3) which divides the PPI into 4 classes according to its interaction evidence and subcellular localization. It has been shown in the literature that a pair of genuine interacting proteins are generally expected to have a common cellular role and proteins that have common interaction partners have a high chance of sharing a common function. In AtPIN, due to its integrative profile, the reliability index for a reported PPI can be postulated in terms of the proportion of interaction partners that two proteins have in common. For this, we implement the Functional Similarity Weight (FSW) calculation for all first level interactions present in AtPIN database. In order to identify target proteins of cytosolic glutamyl-tRNA synthetase (Cyt-gluRS) (AT5G26710) we combined two approaches, AtPIN search and yeast two-hybrid screening. Interestingly, the proteins glutamine synthetase (AT5G35630), a disease resistance protein (AT3G50950) and a zinc finger protein (AT5G24930), which has been predicted as target proteins for Cyt-gluRS by AtPIN, were also detected in the experimental screening.
AtPIN is a friendly and easy-to-use tool that aggregates information on Arabidopsis thaliana PPIs, ontology, and sub-cellular localization, and might be a useful and reliable strategy to map protein-protein interactions in Arabidopsis. AtPIN can be accessed at http://atpin.bioinfoguy.net.