Proteins are large biomolecules, or macromolecules, consisting of one or more long chains of amino acid residues. Proteins perform a vast array of functions within organisms, including catalysing metabolic reactions, DNA replication, responding to stimuli, providing structure to cells and organisms, transporting molecules from one location to another. Proteins differ from one another in their sequence of amino acids, dictated by the nucleotide sequence of their genes, which results in protein folding into a specific three-dimensional structure that determines its activity. A linear chain of amino acid residues is called a polypeptide. A protein contains at least one long polypeptide. Short polypeptides, containing less than 20–30 residues, are considered to be proteins and are called peptides, or sometimes oligopeptides; the individual amino acid residues are bonded together by peptide bonds and adjacent amino acid residues. The sequence of amino acid residues in a protein is defined by the sequence of a gene, encoded in the genetic code.
In general, the genetic code specifies 20 standard amino acids. Shortly after or during synthesis, the residues in a protein are chemically modified by post-translational modification, which alters the physical and chemical properties, stability and the function of the proteins. Sometimes proteins have non-peptide groups attached, which can be called prosthetic groups or cofactors. Proteins can work together to achieve a particular function, they associate to form stable protein complexes. Once formed, proteins only exist for a certain period and are degraded and recycled by the cell's machinery through the process of protein turnover. A protein's lifespan covers a wide range, they can exist for years with an average lifespan of 1 -- 2 days in mammalian cells. Abnormal or misfolded proteins are degraded more either due to being targeted for destruction or due to being unstable. Like other biological macromolecules such as polysaccharides and nucleic acids, proteins are essential parts of organisms and participate in every process within cells.
Many proteins are enzymes that are vital to metabolism. Proteins have structural or mechanical functions, such as actin and myosin in muscle and the proteins in the cytoskeleton, which form a system of scaffolding that maintains cell shape. Other proteins are important in cell signaling, immune responses, cell adhesion, the cell cycle. In animals, proteins are needed in the diet to provide the essential amino acids that cannot be synthesized. Digestion breaks the proteins down for use in the metabolism. Proteins may be purified from other cellular components using a variety of techniques such as ultracentrifugation, precipitation and chromatography. Methods used to study protein structure and function include immunohistochemistry, site-directed mutagenesis, X-ray crystallography, nuclear magnetic resonance and mass spectrometry. Most proteins consist of linear polymers built from series of up to 20 different L-α- amino acids. All proteinogenic amino acids possess common structural features, including an α-carbon to which an amino group, a carboxyl group, a variable side chain are bonded.
Only proline differs from this basic structure as it contains an unusual ring to the N-end amine group, which forces the CO–NH amide moiety into a fixed conformation. The side chains of the standard amino acids, detailed in the list of standard amino acids, have a great variety of chemical structures and properties; the amino acids in a polypeptide chain are linked by peptide bonds. Once linked in the protein chain, an individual amino acid is called a residue, the linked series of carbon and oxygen atoms are known as the main chain or protein backbone; the peptide bond has two resonance forms that contribute some double-bond character and inhibit rotation around its axis, so that the alpha carbons are coplanar. The other two dihedral angles in the peptide bond determine the local shape assumed by the protein backbone; the end with a free amino group is known as the N-terminus or amino terminus, whereas the end of the protein with a free carboxyl group is known as the C-terminus or carboxy terminus.
The words protein and peptide are a little ambiguous and can overlap in meaning. Protein is used to refer to the complete biological molecule in a stable conformation, whereas peptide is reserved for a short amino acid oligomers lacking a stable three-dimensional structure. However, the boundary between the two is not well defined and lies near 20–30 residues. Polypeptide can refer to any single linear chain of amino acids regardless of length, but implies an absence of a defined conformation. Proteins can interact with many types of molecules, including with other proteins, with lipids, with carboyhydrates, with DNA, it has been estimated. Smaller bacteria, such as Mycoplasma or spirochetes contain fewer molecules, on the order of 50,000 to 1 million. By contrast, eukaryotic cells are larger and thus contain much more pro
Amino acids are organic compounds containing amine and carboxyl functional groups, along with a side chain specific to each amino acid. The key elements of an amino acid are carbon, hydrogen and nitrogen, although other elements are found in the side chains of certain amino acids. About 500 occurring amino acids are known and can be classified in many ways, they can be classified according to the core structural functional groups' locations as alpha-, beta-, gamma- or delta- amino acids. In the form of proteins, amino acid residues form the second-largest component of human muscles and other tissues. Beyond their role as residues in proteins, amino acids participate in a number of processes such as neurotransmitter transport and biosynthesis. In biochemistry, amino acids having both the amine and the carboxylic acid groups attached to the first carbon atom have particular importance, they are known as α-amino acids. They include the 22 proteinogenic amino acids, which combine into peptide chains to form the building-blocks of a vast array of proteins.
These are all L-stereoisomers, although a few D-amino acids occur in bacterial envelopes, as a neuromodulator, in some antibiotics. Twenty of the proteinogenic amino acids are encoded directly by triplet codons in the genetic code and are known as "standard" amino acids; the other two are selenocysteine, pyrrolysine. Pyrrolysine and selenocysteine are encoded via variant codons. N-formylmethionine is considered as a form of methionine rather than as a separate proteinogenic amino acid. Codon–tRNA combinations not found in nature can be used to "expand" the genetic code and form novel proteins known as alloproteins incorporating non-proteinogenic amino acids. Many important proteinogenic and non-proteinogenic amino acids have biological functions. For example, in the human brain and gamma-amino-butyric acid are the main excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmitters. Hydroxyproline, a major component of the connective tissue collagen, is synthesised from proline. Glycine is a biosynthetic precursor to porphyrins used in red blood cells.
Carnitine is used in lipid transport. Nine proteinogenic amino acids are called "essential" for humans because they cannot be produced from other compounds by the human body and so must be taken in as food. Others may be conditionally essential for medical conditions. Essential amino acids may differ between species; because of their biological significance, amino acids are important in nutrition and are used in nutritional supplements, fertilizers and food technology. Industrial uses include the production of drugs, biodegradable plastics, chiral catalysts; the first few amino acids were discovered in the early 19th century. In 1806, French chemists Louis-Nicolas Vauquelin and Pierre Jean Robiquet isolated a compound in asparagus, subsequently named asparagine, the first amino acid to be discovered. Cystine was discovered in 1810, although its monomer, remained undiscovered until 1884. Glycine and leucine were discovered in 1820; the last of the 20 common amino acids to be discovered was threonine in 1935 by William Cumming Rose, who determined the essential amino acids and established the minimum daily requirements of all amino acids for optimal growth.
The unity of the chemical category was recognized by Wurtz in 1865, but he gave no particular name to it. Usage of the term "amino acid" in the English language is from 1898, while the German term, Aminosäure, was used earlier. Proteins were found to yield amino acids after enzymatic acid hydrolysis. In 1902, Emil Fischer and Franz Hofmeister independently proposed that proteins are formed from many amino acids, whereby bonds are formed between the amino group of one amino acid with the carboxyl group of another, resulting in a linear structure that Fischer termed "peptide". In the structure shown at the top of the page, R represents a side chain specific to each amino acid; the carbon atom next to the carboxyl group is called the α–carbon. Amino acids containing an amino group bonded directly to the alpha carbon are referred to as alpha amino acids; these include amino acids such as proline which contain secondary amines, which used to be referred to as "imino acids". The alpha amino acids are the most common form found in nature, but only when occurring in the L-isomer.
The alpha carbon is a chiral carbon atom, with the exception of glycine which has two indistinguishable hydrogen atoms on the alpha carbon. Therefore, all alpha amino acids but glycine can exist in either of two enantiomers, called L or D amino acids, which are mirror images of each other. While L-amino acids represent all of the amino acids found in proteins during translation in the ribosome, D-amin
Leucine is an essential amino acid, used in the biosynthesis of proteins. Leucine is an α-amino acid, meaning it contains an α-amino group, an α-carboxylic acid group, a side chain isobutyl group, making it a non-polar aliphatic amino acid, it is essential in humans, meaning the body cannot synthesize it: it must be obtained from the diet. Human dietary sources are foods that contain protein, such as meats, dairy products, soy products, beans and other legumes, it is encoded by the codons UUA, UUG, CUU, CUC, CUA, CUG. Like valine and isoleucine, leucine is a branched-chain amino acid; the primary metabolic end products of leucine metabolism are acetoacetate. It is the most important ketogenic amino acid in humans.p. 101Leucine and β-hydroxy β-methylbutyric acid, a minor leucine metabolite, exhibit pharmacological activity in humans and have been demonstrated to promote protein biosynthesis via the phosphorylation of the mechanistic target of rapamycin. As a food additive, L-leucine is classified as a flavor enhancer.
The Food and Nutrition Board of the U. S. Institute of Medicine set Recommended Dietary Allowances for essential amino acids in 2002. For leucine, for adults 19 years and older, 42 mg/kg body weight/day; as a dietary supplement, leucine has been found to slow the degradation of muscle tissue by increasing the synthesis of muscle proteins in aged rats. However, results of comparative studies are conflicted. Long-term leucine supplementation does not increase muscle strength in healthy elderly men. More studies are needed, preferably ones based on an random sample of society. Factors such as lifestyle choices, gender, exercise, etc. must be factored into the analyses to isolate the effects of supplemental leucine as a standalone, or if taken with other branched chain amino acids. Until dietary supplemental leucine cannot be associated as the prime reason for muscular growth or optimal maintenance for the entire population. Both L-leucine and D-leucine protect mice against seizures. D-leucine terminates seizures in mice after the onset of seizure activity, at least as as diazepam and without sedative effects.
Decreased dietary intake of L-leucine promotes adiposity in mice. High blood levels of leucine are associated with insulin resistance in humans and rodents; this might be due to the effect of leucine to stimulate mTOR signaling. Dietary restriction of leucine and the other BCAAs can reverse diet-induced obesity in wild-type mice by increasing energy expenditure, can restrict fat mass gain of hyperphagic rats. Leucine toxicity, as seen in decompensated maple syrup urine disease, causes delirium and neurologic compromise, can be life-threatening. A high intake of leucine may cause or exacerbate symptoms of pellagra in people with low niacin status because it interferes with the conversion of L-tryptophan to niacin. Leucine at a dose exceeding 500 mg/kg/d was observed with hyperammonemia; as such, unofficially, a tolerable upper intake level for leucine in healthy adult men can be suggested at 500 mg/kg/d or 35 g/d under acute dietary conditions. Leucine is a dietary amino acid with the capacity to directly stimulate myofibrillar muscle protein synthesis.
This effect of leucine arises results from its role as an activator of the mechanistic target of rapamycin, a serine-threonine protein kinase that regulates protein biosynthesis and cell growth. The activation of mTOR by leucine is mediated through Rag GTPases, leucine binding to leucyl-tRNA synthetase, leucine binding to sestrin 2, other mechanisms. Leucine metabolism occurs in many tissues in the human body. Adipose and muscle tissue use leucine in the formation of other compounds. Combined leucine use in these two tissues is seven times greater than in the liver. In healthy individuals 60% of dietary L-leucine is metabolized after several hours, with 5% of dietary L-leucine being converted to β-hydroxy β-methylbutyric acid. Around 40% of dietary L-leucine is converted to acetyl-CoA, subsequently used in the synthesis of other compounds; the vast majority of L-leucine metabolism is catalyzed by the branched-chain amino acid aminotransferase enzyme, producing α-ketoisocaproate. Α-KIC is metabolized by the mitochondrial enzyme branched-chain α-ketoacid dehydrogenase, which converts it to isovaleryl-CoA.
Isovaleryl-CoA is subsequently metabolized by isovaleryl-CoA dehydrogenase and converted to MC-CoA, used in the synthesis of acetyl-CoA and other compounds. During biotin deficiency, HMB can be synthesized from MC-CoA via enoyl-CoA hydratase and an unknown thioesterase enzyme, which convert MC-CoA into HMB-CoA and HMB-CoA into HMB respectively. A small amount of α-KIC is metabolized in the liver by the cytosolic enzyme 4-hydroxyphenylpyruvate dioxygenase, which converts α-KIC to HMB. In healthy individuals, this minor pathway – which involves the conversion of L-leucine to α-KIC and HMB – is the predominant route of HMB synthesis. A small fraction of L-leucine metabolism – less than 5% in all tissues except the testes where it accounts for about 33% – is catalyzed by leucine aminomutase, producing β-leucine, subsequently metabolized into β-ketoisocaproate, β-ketoisocaproyl-CoA, acetyl-CoA by a series of uncharacterized enzymes; the metabolism o
A carboxylic acid is an organic compound that contains a carboxyl group. The general formula of a carboxylic acid is R–COOH, with R referring to the rest of the molecule. Carboxylic acids occur widely. Important examples include acetic acid. Deprotonation of a carboxyl group gives a carboxylate anion. Important carboxylate salts are soaps. Carboxylic acids are identified by their trivial names, they have the suffix -ic acid. IUPAC-recommended names exist. For example, butyric acid is butanoic acid by IUPAC guidelines. For nomenclature of complex molecules containing a carboxylic acid, the carboxyl can be considered position one of the parent chain if there are other substituents, for example, 3-chloropropanoic acid. Alternately, it can be named as a "carboxy" or "carboxylic acid" substituent on another parent structure, for example, 2-carboxyfuran; the carboxylate anion of a carboxylic acid is named with the suffix -ate, in keeping with the general pattern of -ic acid and -ate for a conjugate acid and its conjugate base, respectively.
For example, the conjugate base of acetic acid is acetate. Carboxylic acids are polar; because they are both hydrogen-bond acceptors and hydrogen-bond donors, they participate in hydrogen bonding. Together the hydroxyl and carbonyl group forms the functional group carboxyl. Carboxylic acids exist as dimers in nonpolar media due to their tendency to "self-associate". Smaller carboxylic acids are soluble in water, whereas higher carboxylic acids have limited solubility due to the increasing hydrophobic nature of the alkyl chain; these longer chain acids tend to be rather soluble in less-polar solvents such as ethers and alcohols. Hydrophobic carboxylic acids react aqueous sodium hydroxide to give water soluble sodium salts. For example, enathic acid has a small solubility in water, but its sodium salt is soluble in water: Carboxylic acids tend to have higher boiling points than water, not only because of their increased surface area, but because of their tendency to form stabilised dimers through hydrogen bonds.
For boiling to occur, either the dimer bonds must be broken or the entire dimer arrangement must be vaporised, both of which increase the enthalpy of vaporization requirements significantly. Carboxylic acids are Brønsted -- Lowry acids, they are the most common type of organic acid. Carboxylic acids are weak acids, meaning that they only dissociate into H3O+ cations and RCOO− anions in neutral aqueous solution. For example, at room temperature, in a 1-molar solution of acetic acid, only 0.4% of the acid are dissociated. Electron-withdrawing substituents, such as -CF3 group, give stronger acids. Electron-donating substituents give weaker acids Deprotonation of carboxylic acids gives carboxylate anions; each of the carbon–oxygen bonds in the carboxylate anion has a partial double-bond character. The carbonyl carbon's partial positive charge is weakened by the -1/2 negative charges on the 2 oxygen atoms. Carboxylic acids have strong sour odors. Esters of carboxylic acids tend to have pleasant odors, many are used in perfume.
Carboxylic acids are identified as such by infrared spectroscopy. They exhibit a sharp band associated with vibration of the C–O vibration bond between 1680 and 1725 cm−1. A characteristic νO–H band appears as a broad peak in the 2500 to 3000 cm−1 region. By 1H NMR spectrometry, the hydroxyl hydrogen appears in the 10–13 ppm region, although it is either broadened or not observed owing to exchange with traces of water. Many carboxylic acids are produced industrially on a large scale, they are pervasive in nature. Esters of fatty acids are the main components of lipids and polyamides of aminocarboxylic acids are the main components of proteins. Carboxylic acids are used in the production of polymers, pharmaceuticals and food additives. Industrially important carboxylic acids include acetic acid and methacrylic acids, adipic acid, citric acid, ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid, fatty acids, maleic acid, propionic acid, terephthalic acid. In general, industrial routes to carboxylic acids differ from those used on smaller scale because they require specialized equipment.
Carbonylation of alcohols as illustrated by the Cativa process for production of acetic acid. Formic acid is prepared by a different carbonylation pathway starting from methanol. Oxidation of aldehydes with air using cobalt and manganese catalysts; the required aldehydes are obtained from alkenes by hydroformylation. Oxidation of hydrocarbons using air. For simple alkanes, this method is inexpensive but not selective enough to be useful. Allylic and benzylic compounds undergo more selective oxidations. Alkyl groups on a benzene ring are oxidized to the carboxylic acid, regardless of its chain length. Benzoic acid from toluene, terephthalic acid from para-xylene, phthalic acid from ortho-xylene are illustrative large-scale conversions. Acrylic acid is generated from propene. Base-cata
Biochemistry, sometimes called biological chemistry, is the study of chemical processes within and relating to living organisms. Biochemical processes give rise to the complexity of life. A sub-discipline of both biology and chemistry, biochemistry can be divided in three fields. Over the last decades of the 20th century, biochemistry has through these three disciplines become successful at explaining living processes. All areas of the life sciences are being uncovered and developed by biochemical methodology and research. Biochemistry focuses on understanding how biological molecules give rise to the processes that occur within living cells and between cells, which in turn relates to the study and understanding of tissues and organism structure and function. Biochemistry is related to molecular biology, the study of the molecular mechanisms by which genetic information encoded in DNA is able to result in the processes of life. Much of biochemistry deals with the structures and interactions of biological macromolecules, such as proteins, nucleic acids and lipids, which provide the structure of cells and perform many of the functions associated with life.
The chemistry of the cell depends on the reactions of smaller molecules and ions. These can be inorganic, for example water and metal ions, or organic, for example the amino acids, which are used to synthesize proteins; the mechanisms by which cells harness energy from their environment via chemical reactions are known as metabolism. The findings of biochemistry are applied in medicine and agriculture. In medicine, biochemists investigate the cures of diseases. In nutrition, they study how to maintain health wellness and study the effects of nutritional deficiencies. In agriculture, biochemists investigate soil and fertilizers, try to discover ways to improve crop cultivation, crop storage and pest control. At its broadest definition, biochemistry can be seen as a study of the components and composition of living things and how they come together to become life, in this sense the history of biochemistry may therefore go back as far as the ancient Greeks. However, biochemistry as a specific scientific discipline has its beginning sometime in the 19th century, or a little earlier, depending on which aspect of biochemistry is being focused on.
Some argued that the beginning of biochemistry may have been the discovery of the first enzyme, diastase, in 1833 by Anselme Payen, while others considered Eduard Buchner's first demonstration of a complex biochemical process alcoholic fermentation in cell-free extracts in 1897 to be the birth of biochemistry. Some might point as its beginning to the influential 1842 work by Justus von Liebig, Animal chemistry, or, Organic chemistry in its applications to physiology and pathology, which presented a chemical theory of metabolism, or earlier to the 18th century studies on fermentation and respiration by Antoine Lavoisier. Many other pioneers in the field who helped to uncover the layers of complexity of biochemistry have been proclaimed founders of modern biochemistry, for example Emil Fischer for his work on the chemistry of proteins, F. Gowland Hopkins on enzymes and the dynamic nature of biochemistry; the term "biochemistry" itself is derived from a combination of chemistry. In 1877, Felix Hoppe-Seyler used the term as a synonym for physiological chemistry in the foreword to the first issue of Zeitschrift für Physiologische Chemie where he argued for the setting up of institutes dedicated to this field of study.
The German chemist Carl Neuberg however is cited to have coined the word in 1903, while some credited it to Franz Hofmeister. It was once believed that life and its materials had some essential property or substance distinct from any found in non-living matter, it was thought that only living beings could produce the molecules of life. In 1828, Friedrich Wöhler published a paper on the synthesis of urea, proving that organic compounds can be created artificially. Since biochemistry has advanced since the mid-20th century, with the development of new techniques such as chromatography, X-ray diffraction, dual polarisation interferometry, NMR spectroscopy, radioisotopic labeling, electron microscopy, molecular dynamics simulations; these techniques allowed for the discovery and detailed analysis of many molecules and metabolic pathways of the cell, such as glycolysis and the Krebs cycle, led to an understanding of biochemistry on a molecular level. Philip Randle is well known for his discovery in diabetes research is the glucose-fatty acid cycle in 1963.
He confirmed. High fat oxidation was responsible for the insulin resistance. Another significant historic event in biochemistry is the discovery of the gene, its role in the transfer of information in the cell; this part of biochemistry is called molecular biology. In the 1950s, James D. Watson, Francis Crick, Rosalind Franklin, Maurice Wilkins were instrumental in solving DNA structure and suggesting its relationship with genetic transfer of information. In 1958, George Beadle and Edward Tatum received the Nobel Prize for work in fungi showing that one gene produces one enzyme. In 1988, Colin Pitchfork was the first person convicted of murder with DNA evidence, which led to the growth of forensic science. More Andrew Z. Fire and Craig C. Mello received the 2006 Nobel Prize for discovering the role of RNA interference, in the silencing of gene expression. Around two dozen of the 92
A biological membrane or biomembrane is an enclosing or separating membrane that acts as a selectively permeable barrier within living things. Biological membranes, in the form of eukaryotic cell membranes, consist of a phospholipid bilayer with embedded and peripheral proteins used in communication and transportation of chemicals and ions; the bulk of lipid in a cell membrane provides a fluid matrix for proteins to rotate and laterally diffuse for physiological functioning. Proteins are adapted to high membrane fluidity environment of lipid bilayer with the presence of an annular lipid shell, consisting of lipid molecules bound to surface of integral membrane proteins; the cell membranes are different from the isolating tissues formed by layers of cells, such as mucous membranes, basement membranes, serous membranes. The lipid bilayer consists of two layers - an inner leaflet; the components of bilayers are distributed unequally between the two surfaces to create asymmetry between the outer and inner surfaces.
This asymmetric organization is important for cell functions such as cell signaling. The asymmetry of the biological membrane reflects the different functions of the two leaflets of the membrane; as seen in the fluid membrane model of the phospholipid bilayer, the outer leaflet and inner leaflet of the membrane are asymmetrical in their composition. Certain proteins and lipids rest only on one surface of not the other. • Both the plasma membrane and internal membranes have cytosolic and exoplasmic faces • This orientation is maintained during membrane trafficking – proteins, glycoconjugates facing the lumen of the ER and Golgi get expressed on the extracellular side of the plasma membrane. In eucaryotic cells, new phospholipids are manufactured by enzymes bound to the part of the endoplasmic reticulum membrane that faces the cytosol; these enzymes, which use free fatty acids as substrates, deposit all newly made phospholipids into the cytosolic half of the bilayer. To enable the membrane as a whole to grow evenly, half of the new phospholipid molecules have to be transferred to the opposite monolayer.
This transfer is catalyzed by enzymes called flippases. In the plasma membrane, flippases transfer specific phospholipids selectively, so that different types become concentrated in each monolayer. Using selective flippases is not the only way to produce asymmetry in lipid bilayers, however. In particular, a different mechanism operates for glycolipids—the lipids that show the most striking and consistent asymmetric distribution in animal cells; the biological membrane is made up of lipids with hydrophilic heads. The hydrophobic tails are hydrocarbon tails whose length and saturation is important in characterizing the cell. Lipid rafts occur when lipid proteins aggregate in domains in the membrane; these help organize membrane components into localized areas that are involved in specific processes, such as signal transduction. Red blood cells, or erythrocytes, have a unique lipid composition; the bilayer of red blood cells is composed of cholesterol and phospholipids in equal proportions by weight.
Erythrocyte membrane plays a crucial role in blood clotting. In the bilayer of red blood cells is phosphatidylserine; this is in the cytoplasmic side of the membrane. However, it is flipped to the outer membrane to be used during blood clotting. Phospholipid bilayers contain different proteins; these membrane proteins have various functions and characteristics and catalyze different chemical reactions. Integral proteins span the membranes with different domains on either side. Integral proteins hold strong association with the lipid bilayer and cannot become detached, they will dissociate only with chemical treatment. Peripheral proteins are unlike integral proteins in that they hold weak interactions with the surface of the bilayer and can become dissociated from the membrane. Peripheral proteins create membrane asymmetry. Oligosaccharides are sugar containing polymers. In the membrane, they can be covalently bound to lipids to form glycolipids or covalently bound to proteins to form glycoproteins.
Membranes contain sugar-containing lipid molecules known as glycolipids. In the bilayer, the sugar groups of glycolipids are exposed at the cell surface, where they can form hydrogen bonds. Glycolipids provide the most extreme example of asymmetry in the lipid bilayer. Glycolipids perform a vast number of functions in the biological membrane that are communicative, including cell recognition and cell-cell adhesion. Glycoproteins are integral proteins, they play an important role in the immune protection. The phospholipid bilayer is formed due to the aggregation of membrane lipids in aqueous solutions. Aggregation is caused by the hydrophobic effect, where hydrophobic ends come into contact with each other and are sequestered away from water; this arrangement maximises hydrogen bonding between hydrophilic heads and water while minimising unfavorable contact between hydrophobic tails and water. The increase in available hydrogen bonding increases the entropy of the system, creating a spontaneous process.
Biological molecules are amphiphilic or amphipathic, i.e. are hydrophobic and hydrophilic. The phospholipid bilayer contains charged hydrophilic headgroups; the lipids contain hydrophobic tails, which meet with the hydrophobic tails of the complementary layer. The hydrophobic tails are fatty acids that differ in lengths; the interactions of lipids the hydrophobic tails, determine the lipid bilayer physical properties such as fluidity. Membranes in cells define enclosed spaces or compartments in which
In biology, a gene is a sequence of nucleotides in DNA or RNA that codes for a molecule that has a function. During gene expression, the DNA is first copied into RNA; the RNA can be directly functional or be the intermediate template for a protein that performs a function. The transmission of genes to an organism's offspring is the basis of the inheritance of phenotypic trait; these genes make up different DNA sequences called genotypes. Genotypes along with developmental factors determine what the phenotypes will be. Most biological traits are under the influence of polygenes as well as gene–environment interactions; some genetic traits are visible, such as eye color or number of limbs, some are not, such as blood type, risk for specific diseases, or the thousands of basic biochemical processes that constitute life. Genes can acquire mutations in their sequence, leading to different variants, known as alleles, in the population; these alleles encode different versions of a protein, which cause different phenotypical traits.
Usage of the term "having a gene" refers to containing a different allele of the same, shared gene. Genes evolve due to natural selection / survival of the fittest and genetic drift of the alleles; the concept of a gene continues to be refined. For example, regulatory regions of a gene can be far removed from its coding regions, coding regions can be split into several exons; some viruses store their genome in RNA instead of DNA and some gene products are functional non-coding RNAs. Therefore, a broad, modern working definition of a gene is any discrete locus of heritable, genomic sequence which affect an organism's traits by being expressed as a functional product or by regulation of gene expression; the term gene was introduced by Danish botanist, plant physiologist and geneticist Wilhelm Johannsen in 1909. It is inspired by the ancient Greek: γόνος, that means offspring and procreation; the existence of discrete inheritable units was first suggested by Gregor Mendel. From 1857 to 1864, in Brno, he studied inheritance patterns in 8000 common edible pea plants, tracking distinct traits from parent to offspring.
He described these mathematically as 2n combinations where n is the number of differing characteristics in the original peas. Although he did not use the term gene, he explained his results in terms of discrete inherited units that give rise to observable physical characteristics; this description prefigured Wilhelm Johannsen's distinction between phenotype. Mendel was the first to demonstrate independent assortment, the distinction between dominant and recessive traits, the distinction between a heterozygote and homozygote, the phenomenon of discontinuous inheritance. Prior to Mendel's work, the dominant theory of heredity was one of blending inheritance, which suggested that each parent contributed fluids to the fertilisation process and that the traits of the parents blended and mixed to produce the offspring. Charles Darwin developed a theory of inheritance he termed pangenesis, from Greek pan and genesis / genos. Darwin used the term gemmule to describe hypothetical particles. Mendel's work went unnoticed after its first publication in 1866, but was rediscovered in the late 19th century by Hugo de Vries, Carl Correns, Erich von Tschermak, who reached similar conclusions in their own research.
In 1889, Hugo de Vries published his book Intracellular Pangenesis, in which he postulated that different characters have individual hereditary carriers and that inheritance of specific traits in organisms comes in particles. De Vries called these units "pangenes", after Darwin's 1868 pangenesis theory. Sixteen years in 1905, Wilhelm Johannsen introduced the term'gene' and William Bateson that of'genetics' while Eduard Strasburger, amongst others, still used the term'pangene' for the fundamental physical and functional unit of heredity. Advances in understanding genes and inheritance continued throughout the 20th century. Deoxyribonucleic acid was shown to be the molecular repository of genetic information by experiments in the 1940s to 1950s; the structure of DNA was studied by Rosalind Franklin and Maurice Wilkins using X-ray crystallography, which led James D. Watson and Francis Crick to publish a model of the double-stranded DNA molecule whose paired nucleotide bases indicated a compelling hypothesis for the mechanism of genetic replication.
In the early 1950s the prevailing view was that the genes in a chromosome acted like discrete entities, indivisible by recombination and arranged like beads on a string. The experiments of Benzer using mutants defective in the rII region of bacteriophage T4 showed that individual genes have a simple linear structure and are to be equivalent to a linear section of DNA. Collectively, this body of research established the central dogma of molecular biology, which states that proteins are translated from RNA, transcribed from DNA; this dogma has since been shown to have exceptions, such as reverse transcription in retroviruses. The modern study of genetics at the level of DNA is known as molecular genetics. In 1972, Walter Fiers and his team were the first to determine the sequence of a gene: that of Bacteriophage MS2 coat protein; the subsequent development of chain-termination DNA sequencing in 1977 by Frederick Sanger improved the efficiency of sequencing and turned it into a routine laboratory tool.
An automated version of the Sanger method was used in early phases of the