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A Novel Method to Identify Differential Pathways in Hippocampus Alzheimer’s Disease

Chun-Han Liu, Lian Liu

(Department of Neurology, Tianjin First Central Hospital, Tianjin, China (mainland))

Med Sci Monit 2017; 23:2179-2188

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.900929

BACKGROUND: Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common type of dementia. The objective of this paper is to propose a novel method to identify differential pathways in hippocampus AD.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: We proposed a combined method by merging existed methods. Firstly, pathways were identified by four known methods (DAVID, the neaGUI package, the pathway-based co-expressed method, and the pathway network approach), and differential pathways were evaluated through setting weight thresholds. Subsequently, we combined all pathways by a rank-based algorithm and called the method the combined method. Finally, common differential pathways across two or more of five methods were selected.
RESULTS: Pathways obtained from different methods were also different. The combined method obtained 1639 pathways and 596 differential pathways, which included all pathways gained from the four existing methods; hence, the novel method solved the problem of inconsistent results. Besides, a total of 13 common pathways were identified, such as metabolism, immune system, and cell cycle.
CONCLUSIONS: We have proposed a novel method by combining four existing methods based on a rank product algorithm, and identified 13 significant differential pathways based on it. These differential pathways might provide insight into treatment and diagnosis of hippocampus AD.

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