ASGARD is A Single-cell Guided Pipeline to Aid Repurposing of Drugs

Nat Commun. 2023 Feb 22;14(1):993. doi: 10.1038/s41467-023-36637-3.


Single-cell RNA sequencing technology has enabled in-depth analysis of intercellular heterogeneity in various diseases. However, its full potential for precision medicine has yet to be reached. Towards this, we propose A Single-cell Guided Pipeline to Aid Repurposing of Drugs (ASGARD) that defines a drug score to recommend drugs by considering all cell clusters to address the intercellular heterogeneity within each patient. ASGARD shows significantly better average accuracy on single-drug therapy compared to two bulk-cell-based drug repurposing methods. We also demonstrated that it performs considerably better than other cell cluster-level predicting methods. In addition, we validate ASGARD using the drug response prediction method TRANSACT with Triple-Negative-Breast-Cancer patient samples. We find that many top-ranked drugs are either approved by the Food and Drug Administration or in clinical trials treating corresponding diseases. In conclusion, ASGARD is a promising drug repurposing recommendation tool guided by single-cell RNA-seq for personalized medicine. ASGARD is free for educational use at .

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Drug Repositioning*
  • Humans
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations
  • Precision Medicine*


  • Pharmaceutical Preparations