Related topics: protein · cell membrane

New methods can reduce emissions from the textile industry

Both animal and plant cells depend on autophagy in which damaged or superfluous cell material is removed. The degradation of substrates is done by proteins. In animals, it takes place in a cell organelle called the lysosome ...

Plan B for cholesterol transport

Cholesterol is a vital cell building block in humans and animals, and an integral part of the so-called cell membrane. This boundary layer separates the interior of the cell from the neighboring cells and the surrounding ...

Gene for acid-sensitive ion channel identified

In the human body the salt content of cells and their surrounding is regulated by sophisticated transport systems. Special channels in the cell membrane selectively permit salt ions to flow in and out of cells. A research ...

Motor proteins and membrane dynamics

Membranes composed of a lipid bilayer define the outer surface of nucleated cells (the plasma membrane) and delimit the vital organelles within these cells, such as mitochondria and nuclei. The membrane curvature determines ...

X-ray laser sight reveals drug targets

Researchers from the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology have published a review on serial femtosecond crystallography, one of the most promising methods for analyzing the tertiary structure of proteins. This technique ...

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Membrane protein

A membrane protein is a protein molecule that is attached to, or associated with the membrane of a cell or an organelle. More than half of all proteins interact with membranes.

Biological membranes consist of a phospholipid bilayer and a variety of proteins that accomplish vital biological functions. Structural proteins are attached to microfilaments in the cytoskeleton which ensures stability of the cell. Cell recognition proteins allow cells to identify each other and interact. Such proteins are involved in immune response, for example. Membrane enzymes produce a variety of substances essential for cell function. Membrane receptor proteins serve as connection between the cell's internal and external environments. Finally, transport proteins play an important role in the maintenance of concentrations of ions. These transport proteins come in two forms: carrier proteins and channel proteins. Carrier proteins are involved in using the energy released from ATP being broken down to facilitate active transport and ion exchange. These processes ensure that useful substances are able to enter the cell and that toxic substances are pumped out of the cell.

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