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Name: John
Status: Student
Age: 18
Location: N/A
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Date: N/A 


Question:
When bacteria live in boiling hot temperature what features might the fatty acid tails of the phospholipids have that help stabilize the membranes at such extreme temperatures?



Replies:
I don't know the exact answer to this question though it is easy to find out, for instance look at this publication on fatty acid content of thermophiles: (J Bacteriol 1982 Jan;149(1):54-8).

My guess is that the longer the chains, the more 'solid' the membrane becomes which is to be preferred at higher temperatures. I also guess that side-linkage would increase the solidity further. A search in PubMed will probably get you to the information you need.

Trudy Wassenaar



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