Towards semi-automated curation: using text mining to recreate the HIV-1, human protein interaction database

Daniel G. Jamieson, Martin Gerner, Farzaneh Sarafraz, Goran Nenadic, David L. Robertson
Database; 2012

Manual curation has long been used for extracting key information found within the primary literature for input into biological databases. The human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1), human protein interaction database (HHPID), for example, contains 2589 manually extracted interactions, linked to 14312 mentions in 3090 articles. The advancement of text-mining (TM) techniques has offered a possibility to rapidly retrieve such data from large volumes of text to a high degree of accuracy. Here, we present a recreation of the HHPID using the current state of the art in TM. To retrieve interactions, we performed gene/protein named entity recognition (NER) and applied two molecular event extraction tools on all abstracts and titles cited in the HHPID. Our best NER scores for precision, recall and F-score were 87.5%, 90.0% and 88.6%, respectively, while event extraction achieved 76.4%, 84.2% and 80.1%, respectively. We demonstrate that over 50% of the HHPID interactions can be recreated from abstracts and titles. Furthermore, from 49 available open-access full-text articles, we extracted a total of 237 unique HIV-1–human interactions, as opposed to 187 interactions recorded in the HHPID from the same articles. On average, we extracted 23 times more mentions of interactions and events from a full-text article than from an abstract and title, with a 6-fold increase in the number of unique interactions. We further demonstrated that more frequently occurring interactions extracted by TM are more likely to be true positives. Overall, the results demonstrate that TM was able to recover a large proportion of interactions, many of which were found within the HHPID, making TM a useful assistant in the manual curation process. Finally, we also retrieved other types of interactions in the context of HIV-1 that are not currently present in the HHPID, thus, expanding the scope of this data set. All data is available at