What's in MEROPS?
MEROPS contains information about more than 4000 peptidases and nearly 700 inhibitors. As can be seen on the menu to the left, an index of the peptidases by Name leads to a Summary page for each one that provides information on the classification and nomenclature of the peptidase and links to the databases for human genetics, sequences and structures. Additional indexes provide access to the peptidases by MEROPS Identifier or by Organism name so that the user can retrieve all known peptidases from a particular species.
As is described elsewhere, the peptidases and their inhibitors are classified into families and clans, and MEROPS provides a summary page for each individual family and clan also. Many of these contain textual annotation written by the MEROPS team.
There is also a set of supplementary pages. These are:
- The SEARCHES menu allows the user to search MEROPS for a peptidase by name, identifier or database accession number. Peptidase genes can be sought on any human or mouse chromosome. The user can find out what three-dimensional structures are available for any given clan or family. And last by not least, there are three ways to search our collection of peptidase specificity data.
- BLAST MEROPS. A user of MEROPS who has a novel deduced amino acid sequence can search the MEROPS BLAST library with it to find out whether it, or a close homologue, has already been classified in MEROPS. There are separate libraries of peptidases sequences and inhibitor sequences on the two sides of MEROPS. The searches available are BLASTP (protein sequence query against the protein sequence database) and TBLASTX (nucleic acid sequence query against the protein sequence database).
- What's New, describing the new features that have been added to recent releases of MEROPS.
- These About pages, describing the content of MEROPS in various levels of detail.
- The Images page, providing a list of the peptidases for which MEROPS contains images of three-dimensional molecular structures.
- EST Cell Lines page, providing an index to the EST libraries in which our searches have found ESTs homologous with known peptidases.
- Unsequenced Peptidases, listing peptidases that have not yet been sequenced to the extent that we can make a confident assignment to any family.
- The Genomes page showing the results of our analyses of over one hundred whole genome sequences.
- The Statistics page showing the numbers of peptidases and sequences included in the present release, broken down in various ways.
- Distribution of Clans and Families - a table showing which major groups of organisms have been found to contain which clans and families peptidases. This can give clues to the evolution of a family.
- PepList - a list of over 400 well-characterised peptidases that may merit inclusion in more general databases of proteins and enzymes.
- The Download page offering a variety of files that the user can copy for use in his or her own bioinformatic work on these enzymes.
- The Community page listing Societies, Conferences and Suppliers that are of relevance to scientists working on peptidases.
Please note that the Inhibitors side of MEROPS contains inhibitor-oriented versions of several of these pages.