Title: Chemistry-Wide Association Studies (CWAS): A Novel Framework for Identifying and Interpreting Structure-Activity Relationships.
Authors: Low, Yen S; Alves, Vinicius M; Fourches, Denis; Sedykh, Alexander; Andrade, Carolina Horta; Muratov, Eugene N; Rusyn, Ivan; Tropsha, Alexander
Published In J Chem Inf Model, (2018 11 26)
Abstract: Quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSAR) models are often seen as a "black box" because they are considered difficult to interpret. Meanwhile, qualitative approaches, e.g., structural alerts (SA) or read-across, provide mechanistic insight, which is preferred for regulatory purposes, but predictive accuracy of such approaches is often low. Herein, we introduce the chemistry-wide association study (CWAS) approach, a novel framework that both addresses such deficiencies and combines advantages of statistical QSAR and alert-based approaches. The CWAS framework consists of the following steps: (i) QSAR model building for an end point of interest, (ii) identification of key chemical features, (iii) determination of communities of such features disproportionately co-occurring more frequently in the active than in the inactive class, and (iv) assembling these communities to form larger (and not necessarily chemically connected) novel structural alerts with high specificity. As a proof-of-concept, we have applied CWAS to model Ames mutagenicity and Stevens-Johnson Syndrome (SJS). For the well-studied Ames mutagenicity data set, we identified 76 important individual fragments and assembled co-occurring fragments into SA both replicative of known as well as representing novel mutagenicity alerts. For the SJS data set, we identified 29 important fragments and assembled co-occurring communities into SA including both known and novel alerts. In summary, we demonstrate that CWAS provides a new framework to interpret predictive QSAR models and derive refined structural alerts for more effective design and safety assessment of drugs and drug candidates.
PubMed ID: 30376324
MeSH Terms: Databases, Factual; Drug Discovery/methods*; Drug-Related Side Effects and Adverse Reactions/etiology; Humans; Models, Biological; Mutagenicity Tests/methods*; Pharmaceutical Preparations/chemistry*; Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationship*; Stevens-Johnson Syndrome/etiology*