The Structural Variety and Metabolism of Proteins

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Abstract

Individual eukaryote cells contain in the order of 104 different proteins, and each animal species contains an even greater number due to differences between the tissues of an individual and between the individuals themselves; furthermore, the protein spectrum changes during the course of development. The number of different proteins to be found in extant organisms may be as high as 1012. The description of this variety, its origin and biological significance is the most extensive theme in comparative biochemistry. This chapter will concern itself with the possibilities for structural variation and the general metabolism of proteins; further chapters will deal with comparative studies of individual proteins.