PROSITE documentation PDOC00351
Disintegrin domain signature and profile


Disintegrins [1,2] are snake venom proteins which inhibit fibrinogen interaction with platelet receptors expressed on the glycoprotein IIb-IIIa complex. They act by binding to the integrin glycoprotein IIb-IIIa receptor on the platelet surface and inhibit aggregation induced by ADP, thrombin, platelet-activating factor and collagen.

Disintegrins are peptides of about 70 amino acid residues that contain many cysteines all involved in disulfide bonds [3]. Disintegrins contain an Arg-Gly-Asp (RGD) sequence, a recognition site of many adhesion proteins. The RGD sequence of disintegrins is postulated to interact with the glycoprotein IIb-IIIa complex.

The sequences of disintegrins from different snake species are known. These proteins are known as: albolabrin, applagin, barbourin, batroxostatin, bitistatin, echistatin, elegantin, eristicophin, flavoridin, halysin, kistrin, tergeminin and triflavin.

Some other proteins are known to contain a disintegrin domain:

  • Some snake venom zinc metalloproteinases [4] consist of an N-terminal catalytic domain fused to a disintegrin domain. Such is the case for trimerelysin I (HR1B), atrolysin e (Ht-e) and trigramin. It has been suggested that these proteinases are able to cleave themselves from the disintegrin domains and that the latter may arise from such a post- translational processing.
  • ADAM type metalloproteases (see <PDOC50215>).
  • Mammalian epididymial protein 1 (EAP I) [6]. EAP I is associated with the sperm membrane and may play a role in sperm maturation. Structurally, EAP I consists of an N-terminal domain, followed by a zinc metalloproteinase domain, a disintegrin domain, and a large C-terminal domain that contains a transmembrane region.

The schematic representation of the structure of a typical disintegrin domain is shown below:

                +-------------|-----|--+        +------------------+
                |             |     |  |        |                  |
       | |       |    |       *****|**************          |
       +-|-------|----+            +------------------------+
'C': conserved cysteine involved in a disulfide bond.
'*': position of the pattern.

Short disintegrins lack the N-terminal of the domain.

As a signature pattern for the disintegrin domain, we selected a conserved central region that contains five of the cysteines involved in disulfide bonds. A profile was also developed that spans the whole domain.

Last update:

April 2006 / Pattern revised.


Technical section

PROSITE methods (with tools and information) covered by this documentation:

DISINTEGRIN_2, PS50214; Disintegrin domain profile  (MATRIX)

DISINTEGRIN_1, PS00427; Disintegrins signature  (PATTERN)


1AuthorsWilliams J. Rucinski B. Holt J. Niewiarowski S.
TitleElegantin and albolabrin purified peptides from viper venoms: homologies with the RGDS domain of fibrinogen and von Willebrand factor.
SourceBiochim. Biophys. Acta 1039:81-89(1990).
PubMed ID2191722

2AuthorsDennis M.S. Henzel W.J. Pitti R.M. Lipari M.T. Napier M.A. Deisher T.A. Bunting S. Lazarus R.A.
TitlePlatelet glycoprotein IIb-IIIa protein antagonists from snake venoms: evidence for a family of platelet-aggregation inhibitors.
SourceProc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 87:2471-2475(1990).
PubMed ID2320569

3AuthorsCalvete J.J. Schafer W. Soszka T. Lu W.Q. Cook J.J. Jameson B.A. Niewiarowski S.
TitleIdentification of the disulfide bond pattern in albolabrin, an RGD-containing peptide from the venom of Trimeresurus albolabris: significance for the expression of platelet aggregation inhibitory activity.
SourceBiochemistry 30:5225-5229(1991).
PubMed ID2036389

4AuthorsHite L.A. Fox J.W. Bjarnason J.B.
TitleA new family of proteinases is defined by several snake venom metalloproteinases.
SourceBiol. Chem. Hoppe-Seyler 373:381-385(1992).
PubMed ID1515064

5AuthorsBlobel C.P. Wolfsberg T.G. Turck C.W. Myles D.G. Primakoff P. White J.M.
TitleA potential fusion peptide and an integrin ligand domain in a protein active in sperm-egg fusion.
SourceNature 356:248-252(1992).
PubMed ID1552944

6AuthorsPerry A.C.F. Jones R. Barker P.J. Hall L.
TitleA mammalian epididymal protein with remarkable sequence similarity to snake venom haemorrhagic peptides.
SourceBiochem. J. 286:671-675(1992).
PubMed ID1417724

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