A posteriori quality control for the curation and reuse of public proteomics data

Proteomics is a rapidly expanding field encompassing a multitude of complex techniques and data types. To date much effort has been devoted to achieving the highest possible coverage of proteomes with the aim to inform future developments in basic biology as well as in clinical settings. As a result, growing amounts of data have been deposited in publicly available proteomics databases. These data are in turn increasingly reused for orthogonal downstream purposes such as data mining and machine learning. These downstream uses however, need ways to a posteriori validate whether a particular dataset is suitable for the envisioned purpose. Furthermore, the (semi-)automatic curation of repository data is dependent on analyses that can highlight misannotation and edge conditions for datasets. Such curation is an important prerequisite for efficient proteomics data reuse in the life sciences in general. We therefore here present a selection of quality control metrics and approaches for the a posteriori detection of potential issues encountered in typical proteomics data sets. We illustrate our metrics by relying on publicly available data from the Proteomics Identifications Database (PRIDE), and simultaneously show the usefulness of the large body of PRIDE data as a means to derive empirical background distributions for relevant metrics.

Foster JM, Degroeve S, Gatto L, Visser M, Wang R, Griss J, Apweiler R and Martens L (2011), ‘A posteriori quality control for the curation and reuse of public proteomics data’, Proteomics, in press (IF: 4.426).

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