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University of Basel

03 June 2015

How Natural Channel Proteins Move in Artificial Membranes

Natural channel proteins move sideways in a thick artificial membrane that condenses around the channel proteins. (Image: Reprinted with permission from ACS)
Natural channel proteins move sideways in a thick artificial membrane that condenses around the channel proteins. (Image: Reprinted with permission from ACS)

Natural channel proteins are integrated into artificial membranes to facilitate the transport of ions and molecules. Researchers at the University of Basel have now been able to measure the movement of these channel proteins for the first time. They move up to ten times slower than in their natural environment, namely the cell membrane. As reported in academic journal “Nano Letters”, the results may prove useful to the ongoing development of new applications such as nanoreactors and artificial organelles.

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