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The still valid fluid mosaic model for molecular organization of biomembranes: accumulating data confirm it

DISCOVERIES (ISSN 2359-7232),2013, October-December

Leabu M. The still valid fluid mosaic model for molecular organization of biomembranes: accumulating data confirm it. Discoveries 2013, Oct-Dec; 1(1): e7.
DOI: 10.15190/d.2013.7

Submitted: November 26, 2013; Revised: December 25, 2013; Accepted: December 25, 2013; Published: December 31, 2013; 

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The still valid fluid mosaic model for molecular organization of biomembranes: accumulating data confirm it

, PhD*

University of Medicine and Pharmacy “Carol Davila”, Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine; “Victor Babes” National Institute of Pathology; University of Bucharest, Research Center for Applied Ethics

*Correspondence to: Mircea Leabu, PhD, “Victor Babes” National Institute of Pathology, 99101, Splaiul Independentei, 050096, Bucharest, Romania; E-mail: mircea.leabu@ivb.ro


More than forty years passed since Singer and Nicolson launched the fluid mosaic model related to molecular organization and dynamics of cell membranes, applicable to endomembranes as well. During this period of time, that will reach half a century soon, accumulating data all confirm, but not infirm the brilliant idea of such a model. Sometimes, the results developed the model in a very impacting manner, as was the case with the introduction of the membrane microdomain concept (mainly lipid rafts organization). From a didactical point of view, membrane microdomain organization suggests the mosaic’s “bricks” are even more complex than mere proteins or protein aggregates (the initial ones determining the parents of the model to design it). Current times, with high resolution equipments and techniques allowing live cell investigation, have opened new approaches resulting in enhancement of our understanding about biomembranes organization, dynamics and functioning. This paper will analyze some of the most recent data about membrane molecular organization and dynamics of biomembrane components, as well as interpretation of these data to see if they could modify the concept related to the fluid mosaic model. In a text assessment specific to papers in soft sciences, I will show the anticipatory and wise presentation of the fluid mosaic model by Singer and Nicolson, which has made it as a still valid one.

Access full text of the manuscript here:


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