ProteinPrint - Proteins Proteins give your body shape and...

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Proteins give your body shape and hold your body together. Our body weight is about 90% water and fat. Without proteins we are like a human-size beaker filled nearly to the top with salty water and with fat globules floating around in it. Proteins give us shape and hold us together. They allow us to move, help us fight against disease and digest the food we eat. Proteins also carry the digested nutrients all through our body and control just about every process that occurs inside of us. Of all biological molecules, proteins are the most diverse. Perhaps the most important proteins are enzymes, which are capable of speeding up specific chemical reactions and lower the energy required to activate or start a chemical reaction. Enzymes themselves are unaltered in the process. Some enzymes work to digest the foods we eat and break large polymers into individual monomers that our body can use. Other enzymes play important roles in controlling the entire spectrum of chemical and molecular processes that take place in our body. Proteins function as cell signaling molecules, membrane receptors, second messengers in the cytoplasm, and structural elements in cells. Proteins are also regulatory molecules in the nucleus and cytoplasm and serve as markers to identify every cell in our body as “self” so that our immune system can recognize any intrusion by a cell, bacteria or virus that is not “self.” Proteins
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Proteins are large, complex macromolecules that sometimes have a structural function. Keratin, for example, which makes up hair and nails or collagen, which is found in all types of connective tissue, including ligaments, cartilage, bone and tendon. The horns or antlers on animals also consist of durable proteins. Muscles contain proteins that account for their ability to contract and move our body. Even our skin is made from proteins that protect everything on the inside from the environment on the outside. Proteins are polymers of amino acids; they may be composed of one or more
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This note was uploaded on 04/21/2008 for the course BIOL 100 taught by Professor Lee during the Winter '07 term at San Diego State.

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ProteinPrint - Proteins Proteins give your body shape and...

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