SAPPHIRE: A stacking-based ensemble learning framework for accurate prediction of thermophilic proteins

Phasit Charoenkwan, Nalini Schaduangrat, Mohammad Ali Moni, Pietro Lio’, Balachandran Manavalan, Watshara Shoombuatong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


Thermophilic proteins (TPPs) are important in the field of protein biochemistry and development of new enzymes. Thus, computational methods must be urgently developed to accurately and rapidly identify TPPs. To date, several computational methods have been developed for TPP identification; however, few limitations in terms of performance and utility remain. In this study, we present a novel computational method, SAPPHIRE, to achieve more accurate identification of TPPs using only sequence information without any need for structural information. We combined twelve different feature encodings representing different perspectives and six popular machine learning algorithms to train 72 baseline models and extract the key information of TPPs. Subsequently, the informative predicted probabilities from the baseline models were mined and selected using a genetic algorithm in conjunction with a self-assessment-report approach. Finally, the final meta-predictor, SAPPHIRE, was built and optimized by applying an optimal feature set. The performance of SAPPHIRE in the 10-fold cross-validation test showed that a superior predictive performance compared with several baseline models could be achieved. Moreover, SAPPHIRE yielded an accuracy of 0.942 and Matthew's coefficient correlation of 0.884, which were 7.68 and 5.12% higher than those of the current existing methods, respectively, as indicated by the independent test. The proposed computational approach is anticipated to facilitate large-scale identification of TPPs and accelerate their applications in the food industry. The codes and datasets are available at
Original languageEnglish
Article number105704
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalComputers in Biology and Medicine
Early online dateJun 2022
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2022


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