Semi-supervised learning improves regulatory sequence prediction with unlabeled sequences - INRAE - Institut national de recherche pour l’agriculture, l’alimentation et l’environnement Access content directly
Journal Articles BMC Bioinformatics Year : 2023

Semi-supervised learning improves regulatory sequence prediction with unlabeled sequences


Abstract Motivation Genome-wide association studies have systematically identified thousands of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with complex genetic diseases. However, the majority of those SNPs were found in non-coding genomic regions, preventing the understanding of the underlying causal mechanism. Predicting molecular processes based on the DNA sequence represents a promising approach to understand the role of those non-coding SNPs. Over the past years, deep learning was successfully applied to regulatory sequence prediction using supervised learning. Supervised learning required DNA sequences associated with functional data for training, whose amount is strongly limited by the finite size of the human genome. Conversely, the amount of mammalian DNA sequences is exponentially increasing due to ongoing large sequencing projects, but without functional data in most cases. Results To alleviate the limitations of supervised learning, we propose a paradigm shift with semi-supervised learning, which does not only exploit labeled sequences (e.g. human genome with ChIP-seq experiment), but also unlabeled sequences available in much larger amounts (e.g. from other species without ChIP-seq experiment, such as chimpanzee). Our approach is flexible and can be plugged into any neural architecture including shallow and deep networks, and shows strong predictive performance improvements compared to supervised learning in most cases (up to $$70\%$$ 70 % ). Availability and implementation .
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Dates and versions

hal-04297941 , version 1 (21-11-2023)





Raphaël Mourad. Semi-supervised learning improves regulatory sequence prediction with unlabeled sequences. BMC Bioinformatics, 2023, 24 (1), pp.186. ⟨10.1186/s12859-023-05303-2⟩. ⟨hal-04297941⟩
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