OpenProt: a more comprehensive guide to explore eukaryotic coding potential and proteomes

Nucleic Acids Res. 2019 Jan 8;47(D1):D403-D410. doi: 10.1093/nar/gky936.


Advances in proteomics and sequencing have highlighted many non-annotated open reading frames (ORFs) in eukaryotic genomes. Genome annotations, cornerstones of today's research, mostly rely on protein prior knowledge and on ab initio prediction algorithms. Such algorithms notably enforce an arbitrary criterion of one coding sequence (CDS) per transcript, leading to a substantial underestimation of the coding potential of eukaryotes. Here, we present OpenProt, the first database fully endorsing a polycistronic model of eukaryotic genomes to date. OpenProt contains all possible ORFs longer than 30 codons across 10 species, and cumulates supporting evidence such as protein conservation, translation and expression. OpenProt annotates all known proteins (RefProts), novel predicted isoforms (Isoforms) and novel predicted proteins from alternative ORFs (AltProts). It incorporates cutting-edge algorithms to evaluate protein orthology and re-interrogate publicly available ribosome profiling and mass spectrometry datasets, supporting the annotation of thousands of predicted ORFs. The constantly growing database currently cumulates evidence from 87 ribosome profiling and 114 mass spectrometry studies from several species, tissues and cell lines. All data is freely available and downloadable from a web platform ( supporting a genome browser and advanced queries for each species. Thus, OpenProt enables a more comprehensive landscape of eukaryotic genomes' coding potential.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • Animals
  • Eukaryota / genetics*
  • Genes / genetics*
  • Genome*
  • Humans
  • Mass Spectrometry
  • Molecular Sequence Annotation
  • Open Reading Frames / genetics*
  • Protein Isoforms / genetics
  • Proteome / genetics*
  • Proteomics / methods
  • Ribosomes / metabolism
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid


  • Protein Isoforms
  • Proteome