Rules of co-occurring mutations characterize the antigenic evolution of human influenza A/H3N2, A/H1N1 and B viruses
Date of Issue2016
School of Computer Science and Engineering
Background: The human influenza viruses undergo rapid evolution (especially in hemagglutinin (HA), a glycoprotein on the surface of the virus), which enables the virus population to constantly evade the human immune system. Therefore, the vaccine has to be updated every year to stay effective. There is a need to characterize the evolution of influenza viruses for better selection of vaccine candidates and the prediction of pandemic strains. Studies have shown that the influenza hemagglutinin evolution is driven by the simultaneous mutations at antigenic sites. Here, we analyze simultaneous or co-occurring mutations in the HA protein of human influenza A/H3N2, A/H1N1 and B viruses to predict potential mutations, characterizing the antigenic evolution. Methods: We obtain the rules of mutation co-occurrence using association rule mining after extracting HA1 sequences and detect co-mutation sites under strong selective pressure. Then we predict the potential drifts with specific mutations of the viruses based on the rules and compare the results with the “observed” mutations in different years. Results: The sites under frequent mutations are in antigenic regions (epitopes) or receptor binding sites. Conclusions: Our study demonstrates the co-occurring site mutations obtained by rule mining can capture the evolution of influenza viruses, and confirms that cooperative interactions among sites of HA1 protein drive the influenza antigenic evolution.
A/H3N2/H1N1 and B
A/H3N2/H1N1 and B
BMC Medical Genomics
© 2016 The Author(s). Open Access. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated