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International Journal of Genomics
Volume 2016, Article ID 7361361, 8 pages
Research Article

Drug Target Identification and Prioritization for Treatment of Ovine Foot Rot: An In Silico Approach

Gene Regulation Laboratory, National Institute of Immunology, Aruna Asaf Ali Marg, New Delhi 110067, India

Received 7 April 2016; Accepted 16 May 2016

Academic Editor: Ian Dunham

Copyright © 2016 Abhishek Acharya and Lalit C. Garg. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Ovine foot rot is an infection of the feet of sheep, mainly caused by Dichelobacter nodosus. In its virulent form, it is highly contagious and debilitating, causing significant losses in the form of decline in wool growth and quality and poor fertility. Current methods of treatment are ineffective in complete eradication. Effective antibiotic treatment of foot rot is hence necessary to ensure better outcomes during control phases by reduction in culling count and the possibility of carriers of the infection. Using computational approaches, we have identified a set of 297 proteins that are essential to the D. nodosus and nonhomologous with sheep proteins. These proteins may be considered as potential vaccine candidates or drug targets for designing antibiotics against the bacterium. This core set of drug targets have been analyzed for pathway annotation to identify 67 proteins involved in unique bacterial pathways. Choke-point analysis on the drug targets identified 138 choke-point proteins, 29 involved in unique bacterial pathways. Subcellular localization was also predicted for each target to identify the ones that are membrane associated or secreted extracellularly. In addition, a total of 13 targets were identified that are common in at least 10 pathogenic bacterial species.