Identification of RNA-binding sites in proteins by integrating various sequence information

Amino Acids,s00726-010-0639-7

CuiCui Wang  , Yaping Fang  , JiaMin Xiao  , Menglong Li


RNA–protein interactions play a pivotal role in various biological processes, such as mRNA processing, protein synthesis, assembly, and function of ribosome. In this work, we have introduced a computational method for predicting RNA-binding sites in proteins based on support vector machines by using a variety of features from amino acid sequence information including position-specific scoring matrix (PSSM) profiles, physicochemical properties and predicted solvent accessibility. Considering the influence of the surrounding residues of an amino acid and the dependency effect from the neighboring amino acids, a sliding window and a smoothing window are used to encode the PSSM profiles. The outer fivefold cross-validation method is evaluated on the data set of 77 RNA-binding proteins (RBP77). It achieves an overall accuracy of 88.66% with the Matthew’s correlation coefficient (MCC) of 0.69. Furthermore, an independent data set of 39 RNA-binding proteins (RBP39) is employed to further evaluate the performance and achieves an overall accuracy of 82.36% with the MCC of 0.44. The result shows that our method has good generalization abilities in predicting RNA-binding sites for novel proteins. Compared with other previous methods, our method performs well on the same data set. The prediction results suggest that the used features are effective in predicting RNA-binding sites in proteins. The code and all data sets used in this article are freely available at

Amino Acids