CNNsite: Prediction of DNA-binding residues in proteins using Convolutional Neural Network with sequence features

Jiyun Zhou, Qin Lu, Ruifeng Xu, Lin Gui, Hongpeng Wang

Research output: Chapter in book / Conference proceedingConference article published in proceeding or bookAcademic researchpeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


Protein-DNA complexes play crucial roles in gene regulation. The prediction of the residues involved in protein-DNA interactions is critical for understanding gene regulation. Although many methods have been proposed, most of them overlooked motif features. Motif features are sub sequences and are important for the recognition between a protein and DNA. In order to efficiently use motif features for the prediction of DNA-binding residues, we first apply the Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) method to capture the motif features from the sequences around the target residues. CNN modeling consists of a set of learnable motif detectors that can capture the important motif features by scanning the sequences around the target residues. Then we use a neural network classifier, referred to as CNNsite, by combining the captured motif features, sequence features and evolutionary features to predict binding residues from sequences. The datasets PDNA-62 and PDNA-224 are used to evaluate the performance of CNNsite by five-fold cross-validation. Performance evaluation shows that the motif features performs better than sequence features and evolutionary features with at least 6.73% on ST, 0.097 on MCC and 0.069 on AUC. When comparing with previously published methods, CNNsite performs better with at least 0.019 on MCC, 4.37% on ST and 0.040 on AUC. CNNsite is also evaluated on an independent dataset TS-72 and CNNsite outperforms the previous methods by at least 0.012 on AUC. The discriminant powers of the motif features of size from 2 to 6 residues show that many motif features with large discriminant power are composed by the residues that play important roles in the DNA-protein interactions. The standalone version of the CNNsite is available at
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings - 2016 IEEE International Conference on Bioinformatics and Biomedicine, BIBM 2016
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781509016105
Publication statusPublished - 17 Jan 2017
Event2016 IEEE International Conference on Bioinformatics and Biomedicine, BIBM 2016 - Shenzhen, China
Duration: 15 Dec 201618 Dec 2016


Conference2016 IEEE International Conference on Bioinformatics and Biomedicine, BIBM 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Genetics(clinical)
  • Biochemistry, medical
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Health Informatics

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