Encyclopedia of Systems Biology

2013 Edition
| Editors: Werner Dubitzky, Olaf Wolkenhauer, Kwang-Hyun Cho, Hiroki Yokota

Disease-oriented Causal Networks

  • Sanjeev Kumar
  • Shipra Agrawal
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-9863-7_204


DOCN represents the relationship across disease, candidate genes, regulatory genes and their functions to define the causal relationship through a gene or protein network. The connectivity across the network is established through directed graphs where the nodes or genes are variables, which are connected through edges. The graph indicates interaction between and across the genes (nodes) to ultimately describe the causal mechanism of a disease. In the DOCN, the graph shows how the change of the state of one variable affects the certainty of the state of another variable hence these causal networks are graphical representations of causal relationships between the variables of the graph. For example, obesity is one of the factors for developing insulin resistance, which in turn is the cause for type 2 diabetes.


Usage of the Disease-Oriented Causal Networks

Disease mechanisms can be explained using causal networks. These networks are used to identify genes,...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.


  1. Barabási A-L, Gulbahce N, Loscalzo J (2012) Network medicine: a network-based approach to human disease. Nat Rev 8(4):286–295Google Scholar
  2. Schadt EE, Friend SH, Shaywitz DA (2009) A network view of disease and compound screening. Nat Rev Drug Disc 8(4):286–295CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.BioCOS Life Sciences Private LimitedBangaloreIndia
  2. 2.BioCOS Life Sciences Pvt. Limited, Institute of Bioinformatics and Applied BiotechnologyBangaloreIndia