Molecular Mechanisms of Membrane Fusion and Applications of Membrane Fusion Techniques
The functioning of all eukaryotic cells is critically dependent on a variety of membrane fusion phenomena. For example, membrane fusion plays a key role not only in such cell-cell fusion events as fertilization and myogenesis, but also in intracellular transport processes, involving specific fusion events between membrane vesicles derived from various cellular compartments. This vesicular fusion appears to be a general trafficking mechanism in the sorting of cellular components during membrane biogenesis and the assembly of cell organelles. Vesicular fusion also plays a central role in the internalization of compounds from the extracellular environment through endocytosis, and their subsequent intracellular processing, and in the exocytotic secretion of products synthesized by the cell. Finally, membrane fusion is a crucial step in the infectious entry of enveloped viruses into cells.
KeywordsInfluenza Virus Membrane Fusion Phospholipid Vesicle Erythrocyte Ghost Fusion Activity
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