Question

Describe briefly how cells can achieve particular shapes with reference to one or two proteins that...

Describe briefly how cells can achieve particular shapes with reference to one or two proteins that are involved in forming these shapes.

Homework Answers

Answer #1

cells can achieve particular shapes because cell are comprised of proteins and proteins are comprised of amino acids with various types of side chains, which may be hydrophobic, hydrophilic, or electrically charged. The characteristics of these side chains affect what shape the protein will form because they will interact differently intramolecularly and with the surrounding environment, favoring certain conformations and structures over others.

Proteins follow energetically favorable pathways to form stable, orderly, structures; this is known as the proteins’ native structure. Most proteins can only perform their various functions when they are folded. The proteins’ folding pathway, or mechanism, is the typical sequence of structural changes the protein undergoes in order to reach its native structure. Protein folding takes place in a highly crowded, complex, molecular environment within the cell, and often requires the assistance of molecular chaperones, in order to avoid aggregation or misfolding.

For example, the sickle cell shape is formed as hemoglobin give up their oxygen resulting in stiff red blood cells forming rod-like structures.

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