Membrane Dynamics

Abstract

Biological membranes are fluid dynamic closed structures that separate the inside from the outside of cells and compartments within cells. Proteins are inserted into random or more organized regions of a bimolecular ordered fluid film of lipids, where they display different degrees of motion within the plane of the membrane, but almost no (flipā€flop) motion across the lipid bilayer.

Keywords: lipid bilayer; membrane fluidity; lipid domains; single molecule tracking

Figure 1.

Structures and distributions of some common lipids of eukaryotic plasma membranes.

a Composition of plasma membranes of mast (RBL–2H3) cells for phospholipids and sphingomyelin (sum of these two classes =  100%). From Fridriksson et al..

Figure 2.

A contemporary model of a cell plasma membrane. The model shows asymmetric lipid and protein distributions, coexisting liquid‐disordered and liquid‐ordered (raft) membrane domains, glycosylations on the exoplasmic side and interactions with the cytoskeleton on the cytoplasmic side of the membrane. Doubly acylated proteins are found in both leaflets of the more ordered lipid domains and singly prenylated proteins in the cytoplasmic leaflet of the more disordered lipid domains.

close

References

Brown DA and London E (1998) Structure and origin of ordered lipid domains in biological membranes. Journal of Membrane Biology 164: 103–114.

Fridriksson EK, Shipkova PA, Sheets ED et al. (1999) Quantitative analysis of phospholipids in functionally important membrane domains from RBL‐2H3 mast cells using tandem high‐resolution mass spectrometry. Biochemistry 38: 8053–8063.

Hwang J, Gheber LA, Margolis L and Edidin M (1998) Domains in cell plasma membranes investigated by near‐field scanning optical microscopy. Biophysical Journal 74: 2184–2190.

Keller SL, Pitcher WH III, Huestis WH and McConnell HM (1998) Red blood cell lipids form immiscible liquids. Physical Review Letters 81: 5019–5022.

Kenworthy A, Petranova N and Edidin M (2000) High resolution FRET microscopy of cholera toxin B‐subunit and GPI‐anchored proteins in cell plasma membranes. Molecular Biology of the Cell 11: 1645–1655.

McLaughlin S and Aderem A (1995) The myristoyl‐electrostatic switch: a modulator of reversible protein–membrane interactions. Trends in Biological Sciences 20: 272–276.

Pralle A, Keller P, Florin EL, Simons K and Horber JK (2000) Sphingolipid‐cholesterol rafts diffuse as small entities in the plasma membrane of mammalian cells. Journal of Cell Biology 148: 997–1008.

Sankaram MB and Thompson TE (1991) Cholesterol‐induced fluid‐phase immiscibility in membranes. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA 88: 8686–8690.

Saxton MJ and Jacobson K (1997) Single‐particle tracking: applications to membrane dynamics. Annual Review of Biophysics and Biomolecular Structure 26: 373–399.

Schütz G, Kada G, Pastushenko V and Schindler H (2000) Properties of lipid microdomains in a muscle cell membrane visualized by single molecule microscopy. EMBO Journal 19: 892–901.

Thompson TE, Sankaram MB, Biltonen RL, Marsh D and Vaz WLC (1995) Effects of domain structure on in‐plane reactions and interactions. Molecular Membrane Biology 12: 157–162.

Varma R and Mayor S (1998) GPI‐anchored proteins are organized in submicron domains at the cell surface. Nature 394: 802–805.

Wolf D (1989) Designing, building, and using a fluorescence recovery after photobleaching instrument. In: Taylor DL and Wang Y (eds) Methods in Cell Biology, pp. 271–306. San Diego, CA: Academic Press.

Further Reading

Brown DA and London E (1998) Functions of lipid rafts in biological membranes. Annual Review of Cell and Developmental Biology 14: 111–136.

Edidin M (1997) Lipid microdomains in cell surface membranes. Current Opinion in Structural Biology 7: 528–532.

Jacobson K and Dietrich C (1999) Looking at lipid rafts? Trends in Cell Biology 9: 87–91.

Kusumi A and Sako Y (1996) Cell surface organization by the membrane skeleton. Current Opinion in Cell Biology 8: 566–574.

Simons K and Ikonen E (1997) Functional rafts in cell membranes. Nature 387: 569–572.

Simons K and Toomre D (2000) Lipid rafts and signal transduction. Nature Review of Molecular and Cell Biology 1: 31–39.

Sheets ED, Holowka D and Baird B (1999) Membrane organization in immunoglobulin E receptor signaling. Current Opinion in Chemical Biology 3: 95–99.

Contact Editor close
Submit a note to the editor about this article by filling in the form below.

* Required Field

How to Cite close
Tamm, Lukas K, Kiessling, Volker, and Wagner, Michael L(Mar 2002) Membrane Dynamics. In: eLS. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester. http://www.els.net [doi: 10.1038/npg.els.0001263]