(Phys.org) -- As the interface between the cell and its environment, the cell membrane, which consists of fats and proteins, fulfils a variety of vital functions. Scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry in Martinsried near Munich have performed the first comprehensive analysis of the molecular structure of this boundary layer, and revealed precisely how it is organised. In yeast cells, the entire membrane is made up of independent domains, each containing just one or a few protein types. If a protein is relocated to an inappropriate domain, it may even fail to function. The study shows that the membrane is a kind of patchwork quilt and should help scientists to gain a better understanding of basic cellular processes.
- Three-part handoff delivers proteins to membrane surfaceWed, 24 Aug 2011, 14:35:32 EDT
- Researchers get a first look at the mechanics of membrane proteinsSun, 17 Apr 2011, 13:32:37 EDT
- A chaperone system guides tail-anchored membrane proteins to their destined membraneTue, 5 Jul 2011, 11:35:07 EDT
- Mechanism of sculpting the plasma membrane of intestinal cells identifiedMon, 1 Aug 2011, 16:34:58 EDT
- Location, location, location: Membrane 'residence' gives proteases novel abilitiesFri, 16 Nov 2012, 9:35:39 EST