Assignments for Wednesday's class:

Questions on E and P values from last class?

Discuss false positives -- examples from daily "life"?
When and how to correct for multiple tests? (as individual investigator; as scientific community)

Discussion of Lab exercises.

Types of Error in a Databank search

False positives: The number of false positives are estimated in the E-value. The P-value or significance value gives the probability that a positive identification is made in error (same as with drug tests).
Danger: avoid fishing expeditions. If you do 100 tests on random data, you expect one to be positive at the 1% significance level.

You could apply the Bonferroni correction:

The significance level for the individual test is calculated through dividing the overall desired significance level by the number of parallel tests. The hypothesis to be be rejected is that Not all of the individual tests are significantly different from chance. (all in the sense of "at least one"
(For more discussion of fishing expeditions see here)

False negatives: Homologous sequences in the databank that are not recognized as such. If there are only 12000 different protein families, an average a sequence should have (size of the databank)/12000 matches. In other words, the number of false negatives is probably very large.


Examples for (likely) homologs that do NOT show significant similarity in their primary sequences:

Jim Knox (MCB-UConn) has studied many proteins involved in bacterial cell wall biosynthesis and antibiotic binding, synthesis or destruction. Many of these proteins have identical 3-D structure, and therefore can be assumed to be homologous, however, the above tests fail to detect this homologies. (for example, enzymes with GRASP nucleotide binding sites are depicted here.)

DNA replication involves many different enzymes. Some of the proteins do the same thing in bacteria, archaea and eukaryotes; they have similar 3-D structures (e.g.: sliding clamp, E. coli dnaN and eukaryotic PCNA, see Edgell and Doolittle, Cell 89, 995-998), but again, the above tests fail to detect homology.

Helicase and F1-ATPase. Both form hexamers with something rotating in the middle (either the gamma subunit or the DNA; D. Crampton, pers. communication). The monomers have the same type of nucleotide binding fold (picture)


PAM - Blosum: What does PAM001 refer to, what PAM200? What doesBlosum 62 refer to, what Blosum 45 and Blosum 80?

Powerpoint slides on