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About CBN

The Causal Biological Networks (CBN) database is composed of multiple versions of over 120 modular, manually curated, BEL-scripted biological network models supported by over 80,000 unique pieces of evidence from the scientific literature.

They represent causal signaling pathways across a wide range of biological processes including cell fate, cell stress, cell proliferation, inflammation, tissue repair and angiogenesis in the pulmonary and vascular systems.

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Human 2.0 | Rat 2.0 | Mouse 2.0

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Unique Properties of
the Causal Network Models

  • The networks were built within defined biological boundaries for inclusion of signaling pathways within particular context (species, tissues, cell types, experiment types)
  • The network models are encoded in the Biological Expression Language (BEL), a highly specific biological language that describes biological relationships in computable form, specifying protein abundance, activity or modifcation information as well as tissue, species or experiment context information.
  • The network models provide a high degree of granularity capturing biological molecules including protein, DNA variants, coding and non-coding RNA, chemicals, lipids, methylation states or other modifications (e.g., phosphorylation), as well as disease mechanisms.
  • The nodes in the network models are connected by causally related edges.
  • Most causal edges in the network models are supported by at least one (often multiple) literature reference and are annotated with a variety of metadata, including species, tissue and cell type.
  • The networks are evolving and all different versions are made available in CBN. 98 first generation networks describing lung and vascular biology have been published in six peer-reviewed articles. 50 network models have been consolidated from the 92 lung-relevant networks and enriched with COPD-relevant mechanisms and represent the second generation network models. In addition to peer review, those models have undergone a refinement by experts from the scientific community via the network verification challenge (https://bionet.sbvimprover.com). Further refinement is still under way and new versions will be included in future releases of the database.

Database and Website Features

  • Search for networks by keyword, gene, protein, or small molecule name, biological process, pubmed identifier of supporting evidence...
  • Open and view specific network
  • Browse and filter nodes and edges
  • Browse scientific evidences behind causal edges in the neworks
  • View different versions of networks (when there are multiple versions)
  • Download / export
  • Export network view as svg image
  • This website can be viewed on any device (mobile, tablet, laptop, desktop, etc.) and modern internet browsers
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Crowd-verification of Selected Network Models

Selected networks from the CBN database are subjected to crowd-verification on the https://bionet.sbvimprover.com website in the frame of the sbv IMPROVER network verification challenge. Updated networks are then deposited back into CBN as new versions.

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