Shotgun proteomics uses liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry to identify proteins in complex biological samples. We describe an algorithm, called Percolator, for improving the rate of confident peptide identifications from a collection of tandem mass spectra. Percolator uses semi-supervised machine learning to discriminate between correct and decoy spectrum identifications, correctly assigning peptides to 17% more spectra from a tryptic Saccharomyces cerevisiae dataset, and up to 77% more spectra from non-tryptic digests, relative to a fully supervised approach.
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This work was funded by US National Institutes of Health grants P41 RR011823 and R01 EB007057.
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Käll, L., Canterbury, J., Weston, J. et al. Semi-supervised learning for peptide identification from shotgun proteomics datasets. Nat Methods 4, 923–925 (2007). https://doi.org/10.1038/nmeth1113
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