Predictive Models for Human Organ Toxicity Based on In Vitro Bioactivity Data and Chemical Structure.


Traditional toxicity testing reliant on animal models is costly and low throughput, posing a significant challenge with the increasing numbers of chemicals that humans are exposed to in the environment. The purpose of this investigation was to build optimal prediction models for various human in vivo/organ-level toxicity end points (extracted from ChemIDPlus) using chemical structure and Tox21 in vitro quantitative high-throughput screening (qHTS) bioactivity assay data. Several supervised machine learning algorithms were applied to model 14 human toxicity end points pertaining to vascular, kidney, ureter and bladder, and liver organ systems. Three metrics were used to evaluate model performance: area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC-ROC), balanced accuracy (BA), and Matthews correlation coefficient (MCC). The top four models, with AUC-ROC values >0.8, were derived for endocrine (0.90 ± 0.00), musculoskeletal (0.88 ± 0.02), peripheral nerve and sensation (0.85 ± 0.01), and brain and coverings (0.83 ± 0.02) toxicities, whereas the best model AUC-ROC values were >0.7 for the remaining 10 toxicities. Model performance was found to be dependent on the specific data set, model type, and feature selection method used. In addition, chemical structure and assay data showed different levels of contribution to the prediction of different toxicity end points. Although in vitro assay data, when combined with chemical structure, slightly improved the predictive accuracy for most end points (11 out of 14), a noteworthy finding was the near equal success of the structure-only models, which do not require Tox21 qHTS screening data, and the relatively poor performance of assay-only models. Thus, the top-performing structure-only models from this study could be applied for hazard screening of large sets of chemicals for potential human toxicity, whereas the largest assay contributions to models (i.e., cellular targets) could be used, along with the top-contributing structural features, to provide insight into toxicity mechanisms.


Xu, Tuan; Ngan, Deborah; Ye, Lin; Xia, Menghang; Xie, Heidi Q; Zhao, Bin; Simeonov, Anton; Huang, Ruili;

External Links