dGPredictor: Automated fragmentation method for metabolic reaction free energy prediction and de novo pathway design

Lin Wang, Vikas Upadhyay, Costas D. Maranas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Group contribution (GC) methods are conventionally used in thermodynamics analysis of metabolic pathways to estimate the standard Gibbs energy change (ΔrG0o) of enzymatic reactions from limited experimental measurements. However, these methods are limited by their dependence on manually curated groups and inability to capture stereochemical information, leading to low reaction coverage. Herein, we introduce an automated molecular fingerprint-based thermodynamic analysis tool called dGPredictor that enables the consideration of stereochemistry within metabolite structures and thus increases reaction coverage. dGPredictor has comparable prediction accuracy compared to existing GC methods and can capture Gibbs energy changes for isomerase and transferase reactions, which exhibit no overall group changes. We also demonstrate dGPredictor’s ability to predict the Gibbs energy change for novel reactions and seamless integration within de novo metabolic pathway design tools such as novoStoic for safeguarding against the inclusion of reaction steps with infeasible directionalities. To facilitate easy access to dGPredictor, we developed a graphical user interface to predict the standard Gibbs energy change for reactions at various pH and ionic strengths. The tool allows customized user input of known metabolites as KEGG IDs and novel metabolites as InChI strings (https://github.com/maranasgroup/dGPredictor).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere1009448
JournalPLoS computational biology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Ecology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


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