Standard Article

Intermediate Filaments

  1. Roland Foisner

Published Online: 25 APR 2001

DOI: 10.1038/npg.els.0001259



How to Cite

Foisner, R. 2001. Intermediate Filaments. eLS. .

Author Information

  1. University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 25 APR 2001

This is not the most recent version of the article. View current version (9 DEC 2014)


Intermediate filaments form a major structural network in most eukaryotic cells; their only known function is to protect cells and tissues from disintegration by mechanical stress. They are formed by a heterogeneous class of proteins which share common structural elements and are expressed in a tissue and differentiation-dependent manner.


  • cytoskeleton;
  • coiled coil;
  • intermediate filament-associated proteins;
  • nuclear lamina