Evolutionary conservation of DNA-contact residues in DNA-binding domains

Yao Lin Chang, Huai Kuang Tsai, Cheng Yan Kao*, Yung Chian Chen, Yuh-Jyh Hu, Jinn-Moon Yang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background: DNA-binding proteins are of utmost importance to gene regulation. The identification of DNA-binding domains is useful for understanding the regulation mechanisms of DNA-binding proteins. In this study, we proposed a method to determine whether a domain or a protein can has DNA binding capability by considering evolutionary conservation of DNA-binding residues. Results: Our method achieves high precision and recall for 66 families of DNA-binding domains, with a false positive rate less than 5% for 250 non-DNA-binding proteins. In addition, experimental results show that our method is able to identify the different DNA-binding behaviors of proteins in the same SCOP family based on the use of evolutionary conservation of DNA-contact residues. Conclusion: This study shows the conservation of DNA-contact residues in DNA-binding domains. We conclude that the members in the same subfamily bind DNA specifically and the members in different subfamilies often recognize different DNA targets. Additionally, we observe the co-evolution of DNA-contact residues and interacting DNA base-pairs.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberS3
JournalBMC Bioinformatics
Issue numberSUPPL. 6
StatePublished - 28 May 2008


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