Bioinformatic analysis to discover putative drug targets against diarrheal causative agents
Availability of genome sequences of pathogens has offered a tremendous amount of information that can be useful in drug target identification. Complete genome sequences of several pathogenic bacteria including Shigella spp., Escherichia coli, Vibrio cholerae, Salmonella typhimurium and Yersinia enterocolitica mostly involved in causing diarrheal diseases have been determined. Detection of bacterial genes that are common in all of them, non-homologous to human genes and essential for the survival of the pathogen represents a promising means of identifying novel drug targets. Results recommended that among these common proteins, surface associated proteins might be most useful. Our approach has identified seven essential proteins that may be considered as potential drug targets; motifs were identified for these proteins to determine their functions and antigenicity and profiling was also done to identify probable epitopes among the candidate antigens. This approach enables rapid potential drug target identification, thereby greatly facilitating the search for new drug targets against the causative agents of diarrheal diseases. These results highlight the significance of in silico systematic drug target identification in the post-genomic era.
Key words: Diarrheal diseases, motifs, antigenicity profiling.