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BIO121 CHAPTER 7:

PLASMA MEMBRANE AND


TRANSPORT OF MOLECULES

by SITI SARAH AZMAN


adapted from Nur Hazirah Azmis

Emirates Stadium
DOA PENERANG HATI
CHAPTER TOPICS
1 Introduction
2 Hierarchy of Biological Organization
3 Scientific Methods
4 Chemical Bonds and Water
5 Biological Molecules
6 Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic Cells
Plasma Membrane and Transport of
7
Molecules
LEARNING OUTCOMES
By the end of this chapter, you should be able to:
Understand the structure and function of plasma
membrane
Understand the characteristic of protein

Understand the mechanism of transportation across the


membrane
GENERAL PROPERTIES OF MEMBRANE

A boundary separating living cell from its


non-living surroundings
Made up of:
Continuous bilayer of phospholipid
molecules
Protein molecules embedded in the
bilayer
Thin barrier, 8nm thick
Selectively permeable
Allows some substance across more easily
than the other
Controls traffic in and out of the cell
GENERAL PROPERTIES OF MEMBRANE

Main macromolecules:
Lipids (most abundant phospholipids)
Proteins
Some carbohydrates
Phospholipids and most other
membrane constituents
amphipathic molecules
Have both hydrophobic &
hydrophilic regions
MEMBRANE MODEL EVOLVED TO
FIT NEW DATA

Models of membrane were developed


long before membranes were first seen
with electron microscope in 1950s
EVOLUTION OF MEMBRANE MODEL
1867 Traube : First artificial membrane was synthesized

1899 Overton : Lipid membrane apolar molecules


entered cell with less difficulty than polar
molecules
1917 Langmuir : Phospholipids dissolved in benzene would
form a film on water when the benzene
evaporated.
: The hydrophilic heads were immersed in
water.
EVOLUTION OF MEMBRANE MODEL
1925 Gorter & : Cells surrounded by a lipid bilayer
Grendel
: Molecules in the bilayer are arranged
such that the hydrophobic fatty acid
tails are sheltered from water while the
hydrophilic phosphate groups interact
with water

Hydrophobic
tails
Hydrophilic
head
EVOLUTION OF MEMBRANE MODEL
1935 Davson & : Proposed a Sandwich Model
Danielli
: Phospholipid bilayer lies between two
layers of globular proteins

: One suggestion the proteins on the


surface increased adhesion
Davson Danielli Model (The Sandwich
Model)
Davson Danielli Model (The Sandwich
Model)
Early images from electron microscopes seemed to support the
Davson-Danielli model and until the 1960s, it was considered
the dominant model

Further investigation revealed two problems:


Membranes differed in size, composition and stained
appearance
Membrane proteins are actually not very soluble in water.

Membrane proteins are amphipathic, with hydrophobic


and hydrophilic regions cannot be on surface only
The Fluid Mosaic Model
1972 Singer & : A revised model membrane proteins
Nicolson are dispersed and individually inserted
into the phospholipid bilayer

: The hydrophilic regions of proteins and


phospholipids are in maximum contact with
water and the hydrophobic regions are in
a non-aqueous environment
The Fluid Mosaic Model
The Fluid Mosaic Model Research
Method
Freeze Fracture Technique
A specialized preparation technique, splits a membrane
along the middle of the phospholipid bilayer prior to
electron microscopy.
This shows protein particles interspersed with a smooth
matrix, supporting the fluid mosaic model.
Research Method :
Freeze Fracture
Technique

Copyright 2002 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Benjamin Cummings


The fluidity of membranes
Membrane molecules are in fluid state and held in place
by relatively weak hydrophobic interactions (must be in
liquid and fluid in order to function)
Most of the lipids and some proteins can move:
laterally in the plane of the membrane
flip-flop from one layer to the other.

Copyright 2002 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Benjamin Cummings


The fluidity of membranes
Phospholipids in the plasma membrane can move
within the bilayer two ways

Lateral movement
(~107 times per second) Flip-flop
(~ once per month)
The fluidity of membranes
The lateral movements of phospholipids are rapid, about 2
microns per second.
Many larger membrane proteins move more slowly but do
drift.
Some proteins move in very directed manner, perhaps
guided/driven by the motor proteins attached to the
cytoskeleton.
Other proteins never move, anchored by the cytoskeleton.

Copyright 2002 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Benjamin Cummings


The fluidity of membranes
Membrane fluidity is influenced by
temperature and by its constituents.
As temperatures cool, membranes switch from

a fluid state to a solid state as the


phospholipids are more closely packed.
The fluidity of membranes
Membranes rich in unsaturated fatty acids are
more fluid that those dominated by saturated
fatty acids because the kinks (double bonds are
located) in the unsaturated fatty acid tails prevent
tight packing.
Kink: a sharp twist or
curve in something that is
otherwise straight

Copyright 2002 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Benjamin Cummings


The fluidity of membranes
The steroid cholesterol is wedged between
phospholipid molecules in the plasma membrane of
animals cells.
At warm temperatures, it restrains the movement of
phospholipids and reduces fluidity.
At cool temperatures, it maintains fluidity by
preventing tight packing.

Wedge = Force into


a narrow space

Copyright 2002 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Benjamin Cummings


The fluidity of membranes
To work properly with active enzymes and
appropriate permeability, membrane must be fluid,
about as fluid as salad oil.
Cells can alter the lipid composition of membranes to
compensate for changes in fluidity caused by
changing temperatures.
For example, cold-adapted organisms, such as
winter wheat, increase the percentage of
unsaturated phospholipids in the autumn.
This allows these organisms to prevent their
membranes from solidifying during winter.
Copyright 2002 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Benjamin Cummings
REFERENCES
Lombard, J. Once upon a time the cell
membranes: 175 years of cell boundary research.
(2014) Biology Direct 9:32

Campbell, Biology (10th ed)


THANK
YOU

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