model was used to study cell membranes? Much
of the early research on membranes was done on red blood cells. Red
blood cells have lost all their organelles. They contain
only the oxygen-carrying protein, hemoglobin.
cells are important to learn about for several reasons:
cells are easy to get (from people, animal slaughter houses,
of blood have lots of cells (1 ml has about 5,000,000,000 or 5
billion cells). So, if you want to measure a single
cell you can measure a whole bunch and then divide by the total
number of cells. This would give you information for each cell.
are fairly sturdy. When put in a test tube, they can be spun at high speeds to pack
all the cells tightly together at the bottom of the tube.
shape makes it easy to use equations to estimate diameter and
Many of our ideas about membranes came from the study of red
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