Daniel Liebler
Faculty Member
Last active: 2/15/2016

P-Mod: an algorithm and software to map modifications to peptide sequences using tandem MS data.

Hansen BT, Davey SW, Ham AJ, Liebler DC
J Proteome Res. 2005 4 (2): 358-68

PMID: 15822911 · DOI:10.1021/pr0498234

The discovery of unanticipated protein modifications is one of the most challenging problems in proteomics. Whereas widely used algorithms such as Sequest and Mascot enable mapping of modifications when the mass and amino acid specificity are known, unexpected modifications cannot be identified with these tools. We have developed an algorithm and software called P-Mod, which enables discovery and sequence mapping of modifications to target proteins known to be represented in the analysis or identified by Sequest. P-Mod matches MS/MS spectra to peptide sequences in a search list. For spectra of modified peptides, P-Mod calculates mass differences between search peptide sequences and MS/MS precursors and localizes the mass shift to a sequence position in the peptide. Because modifications are detected as mass shifts, P-Mod does not require the user to guess at masses or sequence locations of modifications. P-Mod uses extreme value statistics to assign p value estimates to sequence-to-spectrum matches. The reported p values are scaled to account for the number of comparisons, so that error rates do not increase with the expanded search lists that result from incorporating potential peptide modifications. Combination of P-Mod searches from multiple LC-MS/MS analyses and multiple samples revealed previously unreported BSA modifications, including a novel decarboxymethylation or D-->G substitution at position 579 of the protein. P-Mod can serve a unique role in the identification of protein modifications both from exogenous and endogenous sources and may be useful for identifying modified protein forms as biomarkers for toxicity and disease processes.

MeSH Terms (8)

Algorithms Amino Acid Sequence Mass Spectrometry Molecular Sequence Data Peptides Sensitivity and Specificity Software User-Computer Interface

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