Discovery of Pan-Cancer Related Genes Via Integrative Network Analysis

Document Type


Publication Date



Computing Sciences and Computer Engineering


Identification of cancer-related genes is helpful for understanding the pathogenesis of cancer, developing targeted drugs and creating new diagnostic and therapeutic methods. Considering the complexity of the biological laboratory methods, many network-based methods have been proposed to identify cancer-related genes at the global perspective with the increasing availability of high-throughput data. Some studies have focused on the tissue-specific cancer networks. However, cancers from different tissues may share common features, and those methods may ignore the differences and similarities across cancers during the establishment of modeling. In this work, in order to make full use of global information of the network, we first establish the pan-cancer network via differential network algorithm, which not only contains heterogeneous data across multiple cancer types but also contains heterogeneous data between tumor samples and normal samples. Second, the node representation vectors are learned by network embedding. In contrast to ranking analysis-based methods, with the help of integrative network analysis, we transform the cancer-related gene identification problem into a binary classification problem. The final results are obtained via ensemble classification. We further applied these methods to the most commonly used gene expression data involving six tissue-specific cancer types. As a result, an integrative pan-cancer network and several biologically meaningful results were obtained. As examples, nine genes were ultimately identified as potential pan-cancer-related genes. Most of these genes have been reported in published studies, thus showing our method’s potential for application in identifying driver gene candidates for further biological experimental verification.

Publication Title

Briefings in Functional Genomics





First Page


Last Page


Find in your library