MYTUTOR SUBJECT ANSWERS

704 views

Describe the structure of the cell membrane

The cell membrane is made up of something called the phospholipid bilayer. This is exactly what it sounds like:a hydrophilic phosphate head on the outside and a hydrophobic lipid on the inside. 

They form a bilayer as the hydrophilic head faces outwards as it attracts to water, a second phospholipid does so in the other way, meaning there is a phosphate head facing into the cell and out of the cell.

The bilayer is also intermittently filled with proteins, these can be proteins that are on the outside surface, perhaps acting as extracellular receptors, or inside where they act as intracellular receptors, or scaffolding proteins that give the cell shape. You can also get transmembrane proteins that span the whole bilayer, an example of these could be protein channels.

Furthermore there are also glycoproteins and glycolipids that are important in cell recognition.

Cholesterol is also found in the bilayer, this makes it less fluid, but more flexible and strong.

I would also normally support this with a diagram! 

Thomas W. A Level Biology tutor, GCSE Biology tutor

3 years ago

Answered by Thomas, an A Level Biology tutor with MyTutor


Still stuck? Get one-to-one help from a personally interviewed subject specialist

270 SUBJECT SPECIALISTS

£20 /hr

Axel R.

Degree: Biochemistry with Management (Bachelors) - Imperial College London University

Subjects offered:Biology, Science+ 2 more

Biology
Science
Maths
Chemistry

“Postgraduate student keen on helping you understand Maths and Science! No matter the level, you CAN succeed!”

MyTutor guarantee

£20 /hr

Emma M.

Degree: Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (Bachelors) - Exeter University

Subjects offered:Biology, Spanish+ 2 more

Biology
Spanish
English
Chemistry

“A friendly medical student with lots of experience in tutoring who would love to help you!”

MyTutor guarantee

£20 /hr

Valentina G.

Degree: Biology (Masters) - York University

Subjects offered:Biology, Italian

Biology
Italian

“Studying Biology is extremely interesting but also challenging, that is why I want to help to allow students to look past challenging and focus on interesting!”

Trusted by schools

|  3 completed tutorials

About the author

£20 /hr

Thomas W.

Degree: Biomedical Physiology (Bachelors) - Newcastle University

Subjects offered:Biology

Biology

“Top tutor from the renowned Russell university group, ready to help you improve your grades.”

MyTutor guarantee

You may also like...

Posts by Thomas

Describe the structure of the cell membrane

How are lungs designed for rapid gas exchange?

Other A Level Biology questions

Why does Maltase only catalyse Maltose?

How does a nerve transmit impulses?

how is urine produced in the kidney?

How does DNA replication take place?

View A Level Biology tutors

We use cookies to improve your site experience. By continuing to use this website, we'll assume that you're OK with this. Dismiss

mtw:mercury1:status:ok