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The Effect of Temperature on the Cell Membrane of a Beetroot
My hypothesis was correct, stating that the general trends in the results would be in a negative correlation. The biological theory behind this is explained in context below:
The cell surface membrane consists mainly of lipids and proteins. Carbohydrates are also present, but are always found in association with lipids and proteins, as glycolipids and glycoproteins respectively. Many proteins and lipids have short, branching carbohydrate chains attached to external surface of the membrane, thus forming glycoproteins and glycolipids repectively.
Diagram of the fluid mosaic model of membrane structure
The carbohydrate chains project out into the watery fluids surrounding the cell, where they form hydrogen bonds with the water molecules and so help to stabilise the membrane structure. They also act as receptor molecules, binding with particular substances such as hormones or neurotransmitters. Different cells have different collections of receptor molecules in their membranes that will bind with particular substances. One group of glycoproteins known as antigens are important in allowing cells to recognise each other.
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