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Role of Membrane Lipids in the Organization and Function of the Serotonin1A Receptor

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  • Biochemistry
  • Biology
  • Communication


Microsoft Word - Details of Pushpendra e-thesis.doc ii Synopsis Biological membranes are complex non‐covalent assemblies of a diverse variety of lipids and proteins that allow cellular compartmentalization. The cell membrane imparts identity to a cell and is proposed to be utmost requirement for a living organism. The cell membrane separates the inner cellular environment from extracellular space and plays crucial role in communication between cells and their environments. Membranes are selectively permeable and various physiologically important reactions such as transport, signaling, trafficking and host‐pathogen interactions occur at the membrane. Lipid and protein are two key components of the membrane. A significant portion of integral proteins is embedded in the membrane. Biophysical properties of lipids and membranes could therefore influence the protein function. Lipid‐protein interactions in membranes are therefore of prime importance in assembly, stability, and function of membrane proteins. Cholesterol and sphingolipids are important lipids in this context since they are known to regulate the function of membrane proteins. Cholesterol and sphingolipids are often found distributed non‐randomly in domains in biological and model membranes. Many of these domains ሺsometimes termed as ‘lipid rafts’ሻ are thought to be important for the maintenance of membrane structure and function, although characterizing the spatiotemporal resolution of these domains has proven to be challenging. Specifically, cholesterol is known to play a vital role in the function of neuronal receptors, thereby affecting neurotransmission and giving rise to mood and anxiety disorders. GPCRs are prototypical members of the family of seven transmembrane domain proteins and include ~1000 members which are en

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