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The mEPN scheme: an intuitive and flexible graphical system for rendering biological pathways: an intuitive and flexible graphical system for rendering biological pathways

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Original languageEnglish
Article number65
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalBMC Systems Biology
Issue number65
Publication statusPublished - May 2010


Background: There is general agreement amongst biologists about the need for good pathway diagrams and a need to formalize the way biological pathways are depicted. However, implementing and agreeing how best to do this is currently the subject of some debate. Results: The modified Edinburgh Pathway Notation (mEPN) scheme is founded on a notation system originally devised a number of years ago and through use has now been refined extensively. This process has been primarily driven by the author's attempts to produce process diagrams for a diverse range of biological pathways, particularly with respect to immune signaling in mammals. Here we provide a specification of the mEPN notation, its symbols, rules for its use and a comparison to the proposed Systems Biology Graphical Notation (SBGN) scheme. Conclusions: We hope this work will contribute to the on-going community effort to develop a standard for depicting pathways and will provide a coherent guide to those planning to construct pathway diagrams of their biological systems of interest.

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