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      Cytoscape 2.8: new features for data integration and network visualization

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          Summary: Cytoscape is a popular bioinformatics package for biological network visualization and data integration. Version 2.8 introduces two powerful new features—Custom Node Graphics and Attribute Equations—which can be used jointly to greatly enhance Cytoscape's data integration and visualization capabilities. Custom Node Graphics allow an image to be projected onto a node, including images generated dynamically or at remote locations. Attribute Equations provide Cytoscape with spreadsheet-like functionality in which the value of an attribute is computed dynamically as a function of other attributes and network properties.

          Availability and implementation: Cytoscape is a desktop Java application released under the Library Gnu Public License (LGPL). Binary install bundles and source code for Cytoscape 2.8 are available for download from

          Contact: msmoot@

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          Most cited references 4

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          Cytoscape: a software environment for integrated models of biomolecular interaction networks.

          Cytoscape is an open source software project for integrating biomolecular interaction networks with high-throughput expression data and other molecular states into a unified conceptual framework. Although applicable to any system of molecular components and interactions, Cytoscape is most powerful when used in conjunction with large databases of protein-protein, protein-DNA, and genetic interactions that are increasingly available for humans and model organisms. Cytoscape's software Core provides basic functionality to layout and query the network; to visually integrate the network with expression profiles, phenotypes, and other molecular states; and to link the network to databases of functional annotations. The Core is extensible through a straightforward plug-in architecture, allowing rapid development of additional computational analyses and features. Several case studies of Cytoscape plug-ins are surveyed, including a search for interaction pathways correlating with changes in gene expression, a study of protein complexes involved in cellular recovery to DNA damage, inference of a combined physical/functional interaction network for Halobacterium, and an interface to detailed stochastic/kinetic gene regulatory models.
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            Integration of biological networks and gene expression data using Cytoscape.

            Cytoscape is a free software package for visualizing, modeling and analyzing molecular and genetic interaction networks. This protocol explains how to use Cytoscape to analyze the results of mRNA expression profiling, and other functional genomics and proteomics experiments, in the context of an interaction network obtained for genes of interest. Five major steps are described: (i) obtaining a gene or protein network, (ii) displaying the network using layout algorithms, (iii) integrating with gene expression and other functional attributes, (iv) identifying putative complexes and functional modules and (v) identifying enriched Gene Ontology annotations in the network. These steps provide a broad sample of the types of analyses performed by Cytoscape.
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              Transcriptional regulation of protein complexes within and across species.

              Yeast two-hybrid and coimmunoprecipitation experiments have defined large-scale protein-protein interaction networks for many model species. Separately, systematic chromatin immunoprecipitation experiments have enabled the assembly of large networks of transcriptional regulatory interactions. To investigate the functional interplay between these two interaction types, we combined both within a probabilistic framework that models the cell as a network of transcription factors regulating protein complexes. This framework identified 72 putative coregulated complexes in yeast and allowed the prediction of 120 previously uncharacterized transcriptional interactions. Several predictions were tested by new microarray profiles, yielding a confirmation rate (58%) comparable with that of direct immunoprecipitation experiments. Furthermore, we extended our framework to a cross-species setting, identifying 24 coregulated complexes that were conserved between yeast and fly. Analyses of these conserved complexes revealed different conservation levels of their regulators and provided suggestive evidence that protein-protein interaction networks may evolve more slowly than transcriptional interaction networks. Our results demonstrate how multiple molecular interaction types can be integrated toward a global wiring diagram of the cell, and they provide insights into the evolutionary dynamics of protein complex regulation.

                Author and article information

                1Department of Medicine and 2Department of Bioengineering, University of California, San Diego, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92093, USA
                Author notes
                * To whom correspondence should be addressed.

                Associate Editor: Joaquin Dopazo

                Oxford University Press
                1 February 2011
                12 December 2010
                12 December 2010
                : 27
                : 3
                : 431-432
                © The Author(s) 2010. Published by Oxford University Press.

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (, which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                Applications Note
                Systems Biology

                Bioinformatics & Computational biology


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