Related topics: cells · protein · brain · molecules · nerve cells

Nanoscopic protein motion on a live cell membrane

Cellular functions are dictated by the intricate motion of proteins in membranes that span across a scale of nanometers to micrometers, within a time-frame of microseconds to minutes. However, this rich parameter of space ...

'Dual login' mechanism found to resist fungal infection in cells

Indiana University researchers have identified a mechanism involving the body's ability to resist fungal infection. The work could help advance research on cancer therapies that use the body's own immune system to fight disease.

Mega docking library poised to speed drug discovery

Researchers have launched an ultra-large virtual docking library expected to grow to more than 1 billion molecules by next year. It will expand by 1000-fold the number of such "make-on-demand" compounds readily available ...

Genes on the move help nose make sense of scents

The human nose can distinguish one trillion different scents—an extraordinary feat that requires 10 million specialized nerve cells, or neurons, in the nose, and a family of more than 400 dedicated genes. But precisely ...

Blazes of light reveal how plants signal danger long distances

In one video, you can see a hungry caterpillar, first working around a leaf's edges, approaching the base of the leaf and, with one last bite, severing it from the rest of the plant. Within seconds, a blaze of fluorescent ...

A new model for communication in plant cells

Plant cells share a strange and surprising kinship with animal neurons: many plant cells have proteins that closely resemble glutamate receptors, which help to relay nerve signals from one neuron to another. While plants ...

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Receptor (biochemistry)

In biochemistry, a receptor is a protein molecule, embedded in either the plasma membrane or cytoplasm of a cell, to which a mobile signaling (or "signal") molecule may attach. A molecule which binds to a receptor is called a "ligand," and may be a peptide (such as a neurotransmitter), a hormone, a pharmaceutical drug, or a toxin, and when such binding occurs, the receptor undergoes a conformational change which ordinarily initiates a cellular response. However, some ligands merely block receptors without inducing any response (e.g. antagonists). Ligand-induced changes in receptors result in physiological changes which constitute the biological activity of the ligands.

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