Intrinsically disordered proteins: a 10-year recap

Trends Biochem Sci. 2012 Dec;37(12):509-16. doi: 10.1016/j.tibs.2012.08.004. Epub 2012 Sep 16.


The suggestion that the native state of many proteins is intrinsically disordered (or, as originally termed, unstructured) is now integral to our general view of protein structure and function. A little more than 10 years ago, however, such challenge to the almost dogmatic 'structure-function paradigm' was pure heresy due to the overwhelming evidence that structure determines function. A decade of steady progress turned skepticism around: this 10-year recap review outlines the situation a decade ago and the major directions of the breathtaking advance achieved by experimental and computational approaches. I show that the evidence for the generality and importance of this phenomenon is now so insurmountable that it demands the inclusion of 'unstructural' biology into mainstream biology and biochemistry textbooks.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Drug Design*
  • Humans
  • Models, Molecular
  • Protein Conformation
  • Proteins / chemistry*


  • Proteins