FactorNet: A deep learning framework for predicting cell type specific transcription factor binding from nucleotide-resolution sequential data.


University of California, Department of Computer Science, Irvine, CA 92697, United States. Electronic address: [Email]


Due to the large numbers of transcription factors (TFs) and cell types, querying binding profiles of all valid TF/cell type pairs is not experimentally feasible. To address this issue, we developed a convolutional-recurrent neural network model, called FactorNet, to computationally impute the missing binding data. FactorNet trains on binding data from reference cell types to make predictions on testing cell types by leveraging a variety of features, including genomic sequences, genome annotations, gene expression, and signal data, such as DNase I cleavage. FactorNet implements several convenient strategies to reduce runtime and memory consumption. By visualizing the neural network models, we can interpret how the model predicts binding. We also investigate the variables that affect cross-cell type accuracy, and offer suggestions to improve upon this field. Our method ranked among the top teams in the ENCODE-DREAM in vivo Transcription Factor Binding Site Prediction Challenge, achieving first place on six of the 13 final round evaluation TF/cell type pairs, the most of any competing team. The FactorNet source code is publicly available, allowing users to reproduce our methodology from the ENCODE-DREAM Challenge.


DREAM,Deep learning,ENCODE,Transcription factors,

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