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Describe how a protein molecule is organised into a specific 3 -D shape and how the shape of the protein can facilitate the recognition and binding of specific molecules.

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Introduction

Describe how a protein molecule is organised into a specific 3 -D shape and how the shape of the protein can facilitate the recognition and binding of specific molecules. Proteins are very large 3 dimensional macromolecules. They are very important as structural molecules in the cell, as energy sources, and most importantly as "enzymes"; Proteins are often called "polypeptides" because they are made of long chains of building blocks called "amino acids". As the protein molecules are constructed from varying combination of twenty types of amino acids, they variety of protein structure is never-ending. Protein is made up of its own sequence and number of amino acids, which is unique and is structured to perform a particular function. ...read more.

Middle

This will result to the forming of a coil, fibril or pleated sheet pattern. Tertiary structure is the full 3-dimensional folded structure of the polypeptide chain. This 3D shape results from folding and coiling of amino acids. This shape is important for globular proteins like, enzymes, antibodies, transport molecules like haemoglobin and certain hormones. The tertiary structure forms suddenly due to the attraction and repulsion between the different amino acids in the protein. In quaternary structure of protein two or more than two polypeptide chains aggregated into one functional molecule for example, haemoglobin has alpha chains and beta chains. Quaternary structure forms due to the bonding between the polypeptide chains. ...read more.

Conclusion

Some proteins move freely in the cell membrane whereas others are fixed in particular positions. Most of the functions in the cell membrane are carried by the proteins. Some proteins function as a receptor for chemical messenger from other cells. A receptor protein will have a particular shape that will bind to the shape of a specific messenger molecule such as hormone. Enzymes are the catalyst which speed up the biochemical reactions. Its 3D structure of the protein molecule determines the function of the enzyme. Enzyme bind to the substances called substrate molecules. The figure shows the binding of the substrate molecules with their specific enzyme which has brought molecule A and molecule B a close. Enzymes are able to do that because of their complementary shape. The enzymes themselves are not changed in the reaction. ...read more.

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