Mapping structural data to biological pathways

Reactome pathway browser showing links to structural information in the PDB

Reactome and the Protein Data Bank in Europe are pleased to announce that protein structure information is now readily accessible from within the Reactome pathway browser. 

The two teams have integrated the information captured across these two important data resources in order to facilitate the knowledge-discovery process and better support biologists engaged in biomedical research.

Reactome provides molecular information on human biological processes 

Reactome is an online, manually curated pathway database that provides an integrated view of the molecular details of human biological processes ranging from metabolism to DNA replication and repair to signaling cascades. Reactome’s pathway browser allows biologists to navigate and visualize pathway and network data, and now offers easy access to 3D structural data and citations for proteins that are archived in the Protein Data Bank (PDB).

Biologists can locate structural information using familiar tools and concepts

The Protein Data Bank is the single global archive for 3D macromolecular structures and provides a wealth of knowledge on protein structure and function. However, for structural data to be useful beyond the scope and lifetime of the project in which they were collected, they must be made accessible through links and cross-references to other bioinformatics resources. PDBe’s collaboration with Reactome means that researchers working on biological pathways can now easily locate structural information using software tools and biological concepts that are familiar to them.

Bringing structure to biologists 

Making structural data discoverable by the wider biomedical community is only part of PDBe’s mission of “bringing structure to biology”. As the number of entries in the PDB continues to grow it is becoming increasingly important to help users with limited or no structural biology background to select the most appropriate model for their needs. The Reactome browser will present biologists with the best representative structure of a particular protein based on its sequence coverage and resolution.