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Say I have a metabolic pathway, consisting of multiple metabolites and reactions. On analyzing the pathway I find that among all the metabolite, one metabolite is the hub metabolite (hub metabolite is the metabolite such that maximum number of reactions involve that particular metabolite).

What is the significance of this metabolite or of this pathway?

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  • $\begingroup$ It's hard to say without knowing what metabolite you're talking about -- all metabolites have different roles, and you won't learn much about it simply from network degrees. You have probably hit upon either a common cofactor like NAD or ATP, a small ion like H+, or a common group donor like glutamate. $\endgroup$ – Roland Jul 28 '16 at 8:13
  • $\begingroup$ @Roland isn't there any generalized perspective of it? $\endgroup$ – girl101 Jul 28 '16 at 8:20
  • $\begingroup$ Not much, really ... The "hub" metabolites of course give rise to many products, and they tend to be present in high concentrations (but not all are). But beyond that, you really need to look into the biochemistry. The examples I mentioned have completely different functions. $\endgroup$ – Roland Jul 28 '16 at 9:05
  • $\begingroup$ By your own definition you are talking about several pathways not just one. All you can say about the metabolite is that it's an important intermediate. What else would you imagine? $\endgroup$ – David Jul 28 '16 at 10:50
  • $\begingroup$ @David I am trying to figure out what else can be inferred from the hub metabolite... hence posted the question :) $\endgroup$ – girl101 Jul 28 '16 at 11:24

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