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Open Access Highly Accessed Methodology article

Building a protein name dictionary from full text: a machine learning term extraction approach

Lei Shi and Fabien Campagne*

Author Affiliations

Institute for Computational Biomedicine and Dept. of Physiology and Biophysics, Weill Cornell Medical College; 1300 York Ave; New York, NY 10021, USA

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BMC Bioinformatics 2005, 6:88  doi:10.1186/1471-2105-6-88

Published: 7 April 2005

Abstract

Background

The majority of information in the biological literature resides in full text articles, instead of abstracts. Yet, abstracts remain the focus of many publicly available literature data mining tools. Most literature mining tools rely on pre-existing lexicons of biological names, often extracted from curated gene or protein databases. This is a limitation, because such databases have low coverage of the many name variants which are used to refer to biological entities in the literature.

Results

We present an approach to recognize named entities in full text. The approach collects high frequency terms in an article, and uses support vector machines (SVM) to identify biological entity names. It is also computationally efficient and robust to noise commonly found in full text material. We use the method to create a protein name dictionary from a set of 80,528 full text articles. Only 8.3% of the names in this dictionary match SwissProt description lines. We assess the quality of the dictionary by studying its protein name recognition performance in full text.

Conclusion

This dictionary term lookup method compares favourably to other published methods, supporting the significance of our direct extraction approach. The method is strong in recognizing name variants not found in SwissProt.