Classification of protein aggregates

J Pharm Sci. 2012 Feb;101(2):493-8. doi: 10.1002/jps.22790. Epub 2011 Oct 11.


Comparison of protein aggregates/self-associated species between laboratories and across disciplines is complicated by the imprecise language presently used to describe them. In this commentary, we propose a standardized nomenclature and classification scheme that can be applied to describe all protein aggregates. Five categories are described under which a given aggregate may be independently classified: size, reversibility/dissociation, conformation, covalent modification, and morphology. Possible subclassifications within each category, several examples of applications of the nomenclature, and difficulties in making appropriate assignments will be discussed.

MeSH terms

  • Laboratories
  • Protein Conformation
  • Proteins / chemistry*
  • Proteins / classification
  • Reproducibility of Results


  • Proteins