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The role of protein interaction networks in systems biomedicine.


The challenging task of studying and modeling complex dynamics of biological systems in order to describe various human diseases has gathered great interest in recent years. Major biological processes are mediated through protein interactions, hence there is a need to understand the chaotic network that forms these processes in pursuance of understanding human diseases. The applications of protein interaction networks to disease datasets allow the identification of genes and proteins associated with diseases, the study of network properties, identification of subnetworks, and network-based disease gene classification. Although various protein interaction network analysis strategies have been employed, grand challenges are still existing. Global understanding of protein interaction networks via integration of high-throughput functional genomics data from different levels will allow researchers to examine the disease pathways and identify strategies to control them. As a result, it seems likely that more personalized, more accurate and more rapid disease gene diagnostic techniques will be devised in the future, as well as novel strategies that are more personalized. This mini-review summarizes the current practice of protein interaction networks in medical research as well as challenges to be overcome.