Researchers at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, and Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia, USA, have developed a model that can rationalize the phases and structure of cholesterol superlattices in the cell membrane, a feat that 30 years of extensive studies was unable to achieve.
The model explains the sludge-like mixture of fluid phase and aggregates of rigid clusters of cholesterol that exist and shows how the lateral distribution of sterol superlattices varies. The work will help biomedical researchers better understand the behavior of cell membranes in health and disease.
- A Statistical Mechanical Model of Cholesterol/Phospholipid Mixtures: Linking Condensed Complexes, Superlattices, and the Phase Diagram,
I. P. Sugár, P. L.-G. Chong,
J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2011.