SAMPL6 Challenge Results from pKa Predictions Based on a General Gaussian Process Model

Caitlin C BannanA. Geoff Skillman


A variety of fields would benefit from accurate pKa predictions, especially drug design due to the affect a change in ionization state can have on a molecules physiochemical properties. Participants in the recent SAMPL6 blind challenge were asked to submit predictions for microscopic and macroscopic pKas of 24 drug like small molecules. We recently built a general model for predicting pKas using a Gaussian process regression trained using physical and chemical features of each ionizable group. Our pipeline takes a molecular graph and uses the OpenEye Toolkits to calculate features describing the removal of a proton. These features are fed into a Scikit-learn Gaussian process to predict microscopic pKas which are then used to analytically determine macroscopic pKas. Our Gaussian process is trained on a set of 2,700 macroscopic pKas from monoprotic and select diprotic molecules. Here, we share our results for microscopic and macroscopic predictions in the SAMPL6 challenge. Overall, we ranked in the middle of the pack compared to other participants, but our fairly good agreement with experiment is still promising considering the challenge molecules are chemically diverse and often polyprotic while our training set is predominately...Continue Reading

Related Concepts

Trending Feeds


Coronaviruses encompass a large family of viruses that cause the common cold as well as more serious diseases, such as the ongoing outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19; formally known as 2019-nCoV). Coronaviruses can spread from animals to humans; symptoms include fever, cough, shortness of breath, and breathing difficulties; in more severe cases, infection can lead to death. This feed covers recent research on COVID-19.

Hereditary Sensory Autonomic Neuropathy

Hereditary Sensory Autonomic Neuropathies are a group of inherited neurodegenerative disorders characterized clinically by loss of sensation and autonomic dysfunction. Here is the latest research on these neuropathies.

Evolution of Pluripotency

Pluripotency refers to the ability of a cell to develop into three primary germ cell layers of the embryo. This feed focuses on the mechanisms that underlie the evolution of pluripotency. Here is the latest research.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Chronic fatigue syndrome is a disease characterized by unexplained disabling fatigue; the pathology of which is incompletely understood. Discover the latest research on chronic fatigue syndrome here.

Nuclear Pore Complex in ALS/FTD

Alterations in nucleocytoplasmic transport, controlled by the nuclear pore complex, may be involved in the pathomechanism underlying multiple neurodegenerative diseases including Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Frontotemporal Dementia. Here is the latest research on the nuclear pore complex in ALS and FTD.

Landau-Kleffner Syndrome

Landau Kleffner syndrome (LKS), also called infantile acquired aphasia, acquired epileptic aphasia, or aphasia with convulsive disorder, is a rare childhood neurological syndrome characterized by the sudden or gradual development of aphasia (the inability to understand or express language) and an abnormal electroencephalogram. Discover the latest research on LKS here.

STING Receptor Agonists

Stimulator of IFN genes (STING) are a group of transmembrane proteins that are involved in the induction of type I interferon that is important in the innate immune response. The stimulation of STING has been an active area of research in the treatment of cancer and infectious diseases. Here is the latest research on STING receptor agonists.


Microbicides are products that can be applied to vaginal or rectal mucosal surfaces with the goal of preventing, or at least significantly reducing, the transmission of sexually transmitted infections. Here is the latest research on microbicides.

Regulation of Vocal-Motor Plasticity

Dopaminergic projections to the basal ganglia and nucleus accumbens shape the learning and plasticity of motivated behaviors across species including the regulation of vocal-motor plasticity and performance in songbirds. Discover the latest research on the regulation of vocal-motor plasticity here.