NYU Researchers have Created a Neural Network for Genomics that can Ex …

In the world of biological research, machine-learning models are making significant strides in advancing our understanding of complex processes, with a particular focus on RNA splicing. However, a common limitation of many machine learning models in this field is their lack of interpretability – they can predict outcomes accurately but struggle to explain how they arrived at those predictions.

To address this issue, NYU researchers have introduced an “interpretable-by-design” approach that not only ensures accurate predictive outcomes but also provides insights into the underlying biological processes, specifically RNA splicing. This innovative model has the potential to significantly enhance our understanding of this fundamental process.

Machine learning models like neural networks have been instrumental in advancing scientific discovery and experimental design in biological sciences. However, their non-interpretability has been a persistent challenge. Despite their high accuracy, they often cannot shed light on the reasoning behind their predictions.

The new “interpretable-by-design” approach overcomes this limitation by creating a neural network model explicitly designed to be interpretable while maintaining predictive accuracy on par with state-of-the-art models. This approach is a game-changer in the field, as it bridges the gap between accuracy and interpretability, ensuring that researchers not only have the right answers but also understand how those answers were derived.

The model was meticulously trained with an emphasis on interpretability, using Python 3.8 and TensorFlow 2.6. Various hyperparameters were tuned, and the training process incorporated progressive steps to gradually introduce learnable parameters. The model’s interpretability was further enhanced through the introduction of regularization terms, ensuring that the learned features were concise and comprehensible.

One remarkable aspect of this model is its ability to generalize and make accurate predictions on various datasets from different sources, highlighting its robustness and its potential to capture essential aspects of splicing regulatory logic. This means that it can be applied to diverse biological contexts, providing valuable insights across different RNA splicing scenarios.

The model’s architecture includes sequence and structure filters, which are instrumental in understanding RNA splicing. Importantly, it assigns quantitative strengths to these filters, shedding light on the magnitude of their influence on splicing outcomes. Through a visualization tool called the “balance plot,” researchers can explore and quantify how multiple RNA features contribute to the splicing outcomes of individual exons. This tool simplifies the understanding of the complex interplay of various features in the splicing process.

Moreover, this model has not only confirmed previously established RNA splicing features but also uncovered two uncharacterized exon-skipping features related to stem loop structures and G-poor sequences. These findings are significant and have been experimentally validated, reinforcing the model’s credibility and the biological relevance of these features.

In conclusion, the “interpretable-by-design” machine learning model represents a powerful tool in the biological sciences. It not only achieves high predictive accuracy but also provides a clear and interpretable understanding of RNA splicing processes. The model’s ability to quantify the contributions of specific features to splicing outcomes has the potential for various applications in medical and biotechnology fields, from genome editing to the development of RNA-based therapeutics. This approach is not limited to splicing but can also be applied to decipher other complex biological processes, opening new avenues for scientific discovery.

Check out the Paper and Github. All Credit For This Research Goes To the Researchers on This Project. Also, don’t forget to join our 32k+ ML SubReddit, 40k+ Facebook Community, Discord Channel, and Email Newsletter, where we share the latest AI research news, cool AI projects, and more.

If you like our work, you will love our newsletter..

We are also on WhatsApp. Join our AI Channel on Whatsapp..
The post NYU Researchers have Created a Neural Network for Genomics that can Explain How it Reaches its Predictions appeared first on MarkTechPost.