DisProt 2023_12 - New thematic dataset of condensates-related intrinsically disordered proteins

DisProt team provides a collection of manually curated proteins driving liquid-liquid phase separation (LLPS) and Membraneless Organelles (MLO) related protein formation.

Written on Dec 21, 2023, by Maria Cristina Aspromonte.

New thematic dataset of condensates-related proteins

One of the recent key concepts in molecular biology is represented by the presence and characterization of membraneless compartments, which play a fundamental role in concentrating proteins and nucleic acids, fulfilling important cellular functions. The formation of these compartments is guided by the molecular process liquid–liquid phase separation (LLPS) and is characterized by the presence of molecules enriched in intrinsically disordered regions (IDRs) with a variety of different properties. The construction of the new dataset involves proteins for which experimental evidence has demonstrated their role in phase separation and the formation of membraneless compartments. We relied on the literature as well as manually curated databases such as PhasePro and PhaSeDB, which collect proteins implicated in these processes.

Thanks to the effort of expert DisProt biocurators, Federica Quaglia, Maria Victoria Nugnes and to the main condensates-related proteins curators Rita Pancsa, Emanuela Leonardi, Tamas Lazar the new dataset features 154 proteins and more than 1100** **pieces of evidence obtained from over 300 publications. The new dataset, in particular, includes updates and enrichments of IDRs in proteins involved in these molecular mechanisms.

Examples from the dataset:

  • RNA-binding protein FUS - DP01102 is almost entirely disordered. It has been extensively demonstrated that the FUS protein is fully involved in phase separation, and alterations in this process are implicated in the onset of neurodegenerative diseases.
  • Nucleoprotein - DP03212 encoded by gene N in SARS-CoV-2 has a disorder content of 51.8%. The IDRs in this protein have a crucial role in stabilizing in vitro LLPS.

The current release includes in addition to the thematic dataset entries, more than 350 new entries, 1000 evidences and 400 publications.