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Open AccessFeature PaperReview

A Review of Computational Methods for Clustering Genes with Similar Biological Functions

School of Computing, Faculty of Engineering, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Skudai 81310, Johor, Malaysia
Institute for Artificial Intelligence and Big Data, Universiti Malaysia Kelantan, Kota Bharu 16100, Kelantan, Malaysia
Department of Computer Science and Software Engineering, College of Information Technology, United Arab Emirate University, Al Ain 15551, UAE
School of Computing and Information Systems, University of Melbourne, Parkville 3010, Victoria, Australia
Faculty of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Serdang 43400, Selangor, Malaysia
BISITE Research Group, Digital Innovation Hub, University of Salamanca, Edificio I+D+i, C/ Espejos s/n, 37007 Salamanca, Spain
Division of Data-Driven Smart Systems Design, Digital Monozukuri (Manufacturing) Education and Research Center, Hiroshima University, #210, 3-10-31 Kagamiyama, Higashi-Hiroshima 739-0046, Hiroshima Prefecture, Japan
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Processes 2019, 7(9), 550;
Received: 8 July 2019 / Revised: 5 August 2019 / Accepted: 16 August 2019 / Published: 21 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioinformatics Applications Based On Machine Learning)
Clustering techniques can group genes based on similarity in biological functions. However, the drawback of using clustering techniques is the inability to identify an optimal number of potential clusters beforehand. Several existing optimization techniques can address the issue. Besides, clustering validation can predict the possible number of potential clusters and hence increase the chances of identifying biologically informative genes. This paper reviews and provides examples of existing methods for clustering genes, optimization of the objective function, and clustering validation. Clustering techniques can be categorized into partitioning, hierarchical, grid-based, and density-based techniques. We also highlight the advantages and the disadvantages of each category. To optimize the objective function, here we introduce the swarm intelligence technique and compare the performances of other methods. Moreover, we discuss the differences of measurements between internal and external criteria to validate a cluster quality. We also investigate the performance of several clustering techniques by applying them on a leukemia dataset. The results show that grid-based clustering techniques provide better classification accuracy; however, partitioning clustering techniques are superior in identifying prognostic markers of leukemia. Therefore, this review suggests combining clustering techniques such as CLIQUE and k-means to yield high-quality gene clusters. View Full-Text
Keywords: gene clustering; swarm intelligence; biological functions detection; informative genes gene clustering; swarm intelligence; biological functions detection; informative genes
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Nies, H.W.; Zakaria, Z.; Mohamad, M.S.; Chan, W.H.; Zaki, N.; Sinnott, R.O.; Napis, S.; Chamoso, P.; Omatu, S.; Corchado, J.M. A Review of Computational Methods for Clustering Genes with Similar Biological Functions. Processes 2019, 7, 550.

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