Special Issue "Function, Regulation, and Dysfunction of Intrinsically Disordered Proteins, Volume II"

A special issue of Life (ISSN 2075-1729). This special issue belongs to the section "Proteins and Proteomics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 25 June 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Giuliana Fusco
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Chemistry, University of Cambridge, Lensfield Road, Cambridge CB2 1EW, UK
Interests: biochemistry; structural biology; functional intrinsically disordered proteins; parkinson; alzheimer
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Stefano Gianni
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

It has become acknowledged that a significant portion of proteins encoded in eukaryotic and prokaryotic genomes feature a partial or total degree of structural disorder. Disordered regions can regulate the biological activity of protein molecules, such as the propensity to generate molecular complexity, including the regulation of phase separations. The involvement of intrinsically disordered proteins in fundamental biological processes, including cellular signaling, protein translation, and transcriptional regulation, is increasingly reported to be crucial in functional and pathological mechanisms. The remarkable ability of these molecules to establish macromolecular interactions with multiple biomolecular partners is likely promoted by their inherent flexibility and ability to adapt their shape. While the functional role of IDPs is attracting an increasing research focus, understanding the underlying structural and mechanistic principles of their biological activity remains a crucial research challenge. The role of kinetic versus thermodynamic control is the key to understand the way by which these elusive systems are regulated to solve their intriguing biological functions.

Dr. Giuliana Fusco
Prof. Dr. Stefano Gianni
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Life is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • intrinsically disordered proteins
  • post-translational modifications
  • phase separation
  • structural and functional dynamics
  • binding promiscuity and fuzzy complexes
  • molten globular states
  • kinetic vs thermodynamic control
  • conformational selection vs induced fit

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Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessReview
Tau Oligomers Neurotoxicity
Life 2021, 11(1), 28; https://doi.org/10.3390/life11010028 - 06 Jan 2021
Viewed by 727
Although the mechanisms of toxic activity of tau are not fully recognized, it is supposed that the tau toxicity is related rather not to insoluble tau aggregates but to its intermediate forms. It seems that neurofibrillar tangles (NFTs) themselves, despite being composed of [...] Read more.
Although the mechanisms of toxic activity of tau are not fully recognized, it is supposed that the tau toxicity is related rather not to insoluble tau aggregates but to its intermediate forms. It seems that neurofibrillar tangles (NFTs) themselves, despite being composed of toxic tau, are probably neither necessary nor sufficient for tau-induced neuronal dysfunction and toxicity. Tau oligomers (TauOs) formed during the early stages of tau aggregation are the pathological forms that play a key role in eliciting the loss of neurons and behavioral impairments in several neurodegenerative disorders called tauopathies. They can be found in tauopathic diseases, the most common of which is Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Evidence of co-occurrence of b-amyloid, α-synuclein, and tau into their most toxic forms, i.e., oligomers, suggests that these species interact and influence each other’s aggregation in several tauopathies. The mechanism responsible for oligomeric tau neurotoxicity is a subject of intensive investigation. In this review, we summarize the most recent literature on the damaging effect of TauOs on the stability of the genome and the function of the nucleus, energy production and mitochondrial function, cell signaling and synaptic plasticity, the microtubule assembly, neuronal cytoskeleton and axonal transport, and the effectiveness of the protein degradation system. Full article
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