- Berk, D.A. and Hochmuth, R.M., Lateral mobility of integral proteins in red blood cell tethers,
Biophys. J. (USA), vol. 61 no. 1
pp. 9 - 18 .
(last updated on 2007/04/10)
The red blood cell membrane is a complex material that exhibits both solid- and liquidlike behavior. It is distinguished from a simple lipid bilayer capsule by its mechanical properties, particularly its shear viscoelastic behavior and by the long-range mobility of integral proteins on the membrane surface. Subject to sufficiently large extension, the membrane loses its shear rigidity and flows as a two-dimensional fluid. The experiments examine the change in integral protein mobility that accompanies the mechanical phenomenon of extensional failure and liquidlike flow. A flow channel apparatus is used to create red cell tethers, hollow cylinders of greatly deformed membrane, up to 36-μm long. The diffusion of proteins within the surface of the membrane is measured by the technique of fluorescence redistribution after photobleaching (FRAP). Integral membrane proteins are labeled directly with a fluorescein dye (DTAF)
biodiffusion;biomembrane transport;biorheology;blood;cellular transport and dynamics;molecular biophysics;molecular fluorescence;proteins;