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Microscopic Properties of Discrete Membrane Loci

  • Carlos Gitler

Abstract

Biological membranes can be considered to be metastable association colloids capable of responding to many different environmental and metabolic conditions. This can be concluded from the fact that it has been shown that the membrane components can be readily dispersed by the use of non-ionic and ionic detergents (1–3; see 4 for summary of some of the evidence) as well as by other treatments such as high concentrations of urea, guanidine or solvents which are not drastic enough to break covalent bonds. Thus there is no evidence for a rigid architecture or matrix held by covalent bonds underlying membranes, and whatever structure is seen under a particular set of conditions is the result of the balance of forces acting on the associated colloidal entities. The problem of membrane structure is then one of defining the alternative quasi-stable states which a set of components can assume under a given set of conditions, as well as the transitions occuring between these various states.

Keywords

Erythrocyte Membrane Nitrate Reductase Activity Erythrocyte Ghost Microscopic Property Neuraminic Acid 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1971

Authors and Affiliations

  • Carlos Gitler
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BiochemistryCentro de Investigación y de Estudios Avanzados del I.P.N.México 14, D. F. MéxicoMexico

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