Visualization of intrinsically disordered proteins by high-speed atomic force microscopy

Curr Opin Struct Biol. 2022 Feb:72:260-266. doi: 10.1016/ Epub 2022 Jan 5.


High-speed atomic force microscopy (HS-AFM) is a powerful tool established 13 years ago. This methodology can capture individual protein molecules carrying out functional activities under near-physiological conditions, without chemical labeling, at 2-3 nm lateral and ∼0.1 nm vertical spatial resolution, and at sub-100 ms temporal resolution. Although most biological HS-AFM studies thus far target structured proteins, HS-AFM is also ideally suited to study the dynamics of intrinsically disordered proteins. Here we review some of the dynamic structures and processes of intrinsically disordered proteins that have been unveiled by HS-AFM imaging.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Intrinsically Disordered Proteins* / chemistry
  • Microscopy, Atomic Force / methods


  • Intrinsically Disordered Proteins