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Several algorithms have been developed that use amino acid sequences to predict whether or not a protein or a region of a protein is disordered. These algorithms make accurate predictions for disordered regions that are 30 amino acids or longer, but it is unclear whether the predictions can be directly related to the backbone dynamics of individual amino acid residues. The nuclear Overhauser effect between the amide nitrogen and hydrogen (NHNOE) provides an unambiguous measure of backbone dynamics at single residue resolution and is an excellent tool for characterizing the dynamic behavior of disordered proteins. In this report, we show that the NHNOE values for several members of a family of disordered proteins are highly correlated with the output from three popular algorithms used to predict disordered regions from amino acid sequence. This is the first test between an experimental measure of residue specific backbone dynamics and disorder predictions. The results suggest that some disorder predictors can accurately estimate the backbone dynamics of individual amino acids in a long disordered region.

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PLoS ONE, v. 6, issue 12, art. e29207

© 2011 Borcherds et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.