- 1 Please take the biolibrarian survey
- 2 A reference index for protein interaction data
- 3 Long term goals of the iRefIndex project
- 4 Data availability via download
- 5 Data availability via web interface
- 6 Data availability via Cytoscape
- 7 Data availability via Web services
- 8 Feedback files
- 9 License
- 10 Disclaimer
- 11 Statistics
- 12 Credits
- 13 Citation
- 14 References
- 15 Resources
- 16 Contact
- 17 iRefIndex Google Group
Please take the biolibrarian survey
A reference index for protein interaction data
iRefIndex provides an index of protein interactions available in a number of primary interaction databases including BIND, BioGRID, CORUM, DIP, HPRD, IntAct, MINT, MPact, MPPI and OPHID. This index includes multiple interaction types including physical and genetic (mapped to their corresponding protein products) as determined by a multitude of methods. This index allows the user to search for a protein and retrieve a non-redundant list of interactors for that protein.
iRefIndex uses the Sequence Global Unique Identifier (SEGUID) to group proteins and interactions into redundant groups. This method allows users to integrate their own data with the iRefIndex in a way that ensures proteins with the exact same sequence will be represented only once.
The iRefIndex paper has been published and is available here.
Long term goals of the iRefIndex project
We believe that protein interaction data hold incredible potential for biomedical research. Presently, these data are collected and archived by multiple groups around the world and the number of groups taking part in this work is growing rather than diminishing.
As such, it is important that these databases have the means to effectively exchange and compare data and that they are curating and representing data using similar standards in order to make their data accessible and allow effective use.
To this end, the iRefIndex project has three long term objectives:
- 1) to facilitate exchange of interaction data between interaction databases.
- The iRefIndex paper describes a method for assigning unique and global identifiers to protein interactors, interactions and complexes. This method is independent of the iRefIndex resource and may be used by anyone to facilitate exchange and consolidation of data.
- 2) to consolidate interaction data from multiple sources.
- The method has been used by to index interaction records from multiple sources. The resulting iRefIndex may be used search for the existence of interaction data for any protein regardless of the original resource. Nine interaction databases have been incorporated so far, others will follow.
- 3) to provide feedback to source interaction databases.
- During the process of data consolidation, iRefIndex uses a sophisticated method to keep track of potential problems with source records such as outdated or unfound protein identifiers or incorrectly assigned taxonomy identifiers. These data are provided as feedback files to source interaction databases for correction, clarification or improvements to our own system. This process will help to harmonize data representation and improve the overall quality of interaction records for all source databases. This process will also help source databases to exchange data with one another.
Data availability via download
A subset of iRefIndex data is provided as a tab-delimited text file in PSI-MITAB format.
Data is available via anonymous ftp at:
Password: enter anonymous or your e-mail address
iRefIndex data is provided as a tab-delimited text file in PSI-MITAB 2.5 format. The format is described at
iRefIndex data is provided as a single file or in a number of data sets specific to the organism in which the interaction occurs. See the above link for details.
Source data for the current build is described at
If you need help, see the contact at the bottom of this page.
Data availability via web interface
In collaboration with the Wodak lab at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, we are pleased to announce the first release of a web interface to the iRefIndex.
Data availability via Cytoscape
A beta Cytoscape plugin is available for testing purposes. See README_Cytoscape_plugin_4.0_Beta for more details.
Download from: ftp://ftp.no.embnet.org/irefindex/Cytoscape/plugin/current/. Sign up for the Google Groups email list (below) to be informed of the official release and updates.
Data availability via Web services
A beta version of web-services is available for testing purposes. These services are based on a template from the IntAct  group at EBI. Please see the contact information and Google Groups info below if you plan to use these services or would like to know when they are officially released.
- The feedback files are provided for iRefIndex beat 3.0 and the files for the beta 4.0 will be available soon.
We provide feedback to source databases about our data integration process. These files are described here :
Contact ian.donaldson at biotek.uio.no if you are interested in having your database included in the public release of the iRefIndex.
iRefIndex data distributed on the FTP site includes only those data that may be freely distributed under the copyright license of the source database. This includes data from BIND, BioGRID, IntAct, MINT, MPPI and OPHID.
Data released on the public ftp site is released under Creative Commons Attribution License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5/
iRefIndex also integrates data from CORUM, DIP, HPRD and MPact. These data are not distributed publicly. These data may be made available to academic users under a collaborative agreement.
Contact ian.donaldson at biotek.uio.no if you are interested in using the full iRefIndex database or would like your database included in the public release of the index.
Data is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.
Statistics for the iRefIndex include a breakdown of interactors and interactions from each data source.
For statistics on the public dataset (distributed on the FTP site contains) please refer to:
This release contains;
Total interactions and complexes:754,834
- Unique (distinct) proteins:83,388
- Unique (distinct) interactions and complexes: 369,457
The iRefIndex was developed at the Biotechnology Centre of Oslo, University of Oslo in the Donaldson lab by Sabry Razick and Ian Donaldson. George Magklaras provided systems engineer support and EMBNet Norway provided hardware support.
iRefIndex has been published and is available here. If you use iRefIndex, please cite:
Razick S, Magklaras G, Donaldson IM: iRefIndex: A consolidated protein interaction database with provenance. BMC Bioinformatics. 2008. 9(1):405 PMID 18823568.
Please also cite the source databases described below. iRefIndex consolidates protein interaction data from...
- BIND , ,
- BioGRID ,
- CORUM ,
- DIP ,
- HPRD , ,
- IntAct , ,
- MINT ,
- MPact ,
- MPPI  and
- OPHID .
iRefIndex uses SEGUID based identifiers to group proteins into redundant groups. The SEGUID algorithm and database are described in .
A collection of resources related to finding and working with protein interaction data. Protein Interaction Resources.
Suggestions, requests and comments are welcome. Please email
ian.donaldson at biotek.uio.no.
Visiting and mail address info is here.
iRefIndex Google Group
Join the iRefIndex Google group and receive announcement emails and discuss issues related to iRefIndex. Sign up at irefindex google group.