Cell Biology Glossary

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--Mark Hill 08:40, 20 March 2009 (EST) This is a working page for developing a quick glossary of cell biology designed for students at undergraduate level. The student group project glossary template is more basic than this current page and is available on this page's discussion tab.


A

actin

Cytoskeletal protein forming the backbone of the cytoplasmic microfilament system. Exists as globular actin monomer (G-actin) and microfilament polymer (F-actin).

actin-binding protein

Family of proteins that specifically bind actin within microfilament polymer (F-actin) or globular actin monomer (G-actin).

Actin Depolymerizing Factor

(ADF) alternative name Cofilin, actin-binding protein that can disassemble actin by severing and depolymerizing actin filaments.

Arp2/3

A protein complex essential for actin assembly, generating new filaments and branch points. It is involved in cell motility in many cell processes.

C

cell wall

Structure present outside bacteria and plant cells. Gram-positive bacteria, composed of the cytoplasmic membrane and peptidoglycan layer. Gram-negative bacteria, have an additional outer membrane composed of integral membrane proteins, lipids, and lipopolysaccharides. Lecture - Eukaryotes and Prokaryotes

centrosome

Cytoplasmic microtubule organizing centre and thought to also regulate cell cycle events. PMID: 18437411

cofilin

Alternative name Actin Depolymerizing Factor, actin-binding protein that can disassemble actin by severing and depolymerizing actin filaments.

correlative light/electron microscopy

(CLEM) microscopy technique combining fluorescence light microscopy and electron microscopy for simultaneous observation of subcellular structures. Lab 2 - Microscopy Methods | PMID: 18817522

Cyclase-Associated Protein

(CAP) actin-binding protein that works in conjunction with Cofilin.

D

Dynamin1 nervous system member of the dynamin super-family of GTPases involved in many cellular pathways, implicated in clathrin-mediated endocytosis. Lecture - Cell Import - Endocytosis


Dynamin2 ubiquitously expressed member of the dynamin super-family of GTPases involved in many cellular pathways, implicated in clathrin-mediated endocytosis. Lecture - Cell Import - Endocytosis

E

endosome Lecture - Cell Import - Endocytosis

H

hydrogenosome cytoplasmic anaerobic organelle related to mitochondria adaptated to extreme cellular anaerobic lifestyle. Lecture - Eukaryotes and Prokaryotes |

I

intermediate filament

Cytoskeleton filament system required for cell mechanical stability and integrity. The name comes from the filaments being "intermediate" in cross-sectional size between microfilaments and microtubules. Lecture - Cytoskeleton - Intermediate Filaments

K

keratin

Cytoskeleton intermediate filament protein of epithelial cells required for cell mechanical stability and integrity. Humans have 54 functional keratin genes. Lecture - Cytoskeleton - Intermediate Filaments | PMID: 18461349

L

lipid droplets

Cytoplasmic phospholipid enclosed depots of neutral lipids found in many cell types. PMID: 18546013

lysosome

Cytoplasmic organelle for the degradation of both endocytosed extracellular and autophagy of intracellular materials. Lecture - Cell Import - Endocytosis

M

Mallory-Denk bodies

(MDBs) liver disease associated protein aggregates consisting of ubiquitinated K8/K18, chaperones and sequestosome1/p62 (p62).

microfilament

Cytoskeleton filament system required for cell shape and motility. The name comes from the filaments being the smallest in cross-sectional size of the three filament systems including intermediate filaments and microtubules. Lecture - Cytoskeleton 3 Microfilaments

microtubule

Cytoskeleton filament system required for intracellular transport and motility. The name comes from the system filaments forming "tubes", they are also the largest in cross-sectional size of the three filament systems including microfilaments and intermediate filaments. Lecture - Cytoskeleton 3 Microtubules

mitochondria

Cytoplasmic double membrane organelle, main functions include energy production from aerobic cell respiration and cell death by apoptosis. Lecture - Cell Energy Production - Mitochondria

multivesicular bodies (MVB)

P

plasma membrane

(cell membrane) The lipid based bilayer forming the container for each cell Lecture - Compartments and Cell Membranes

proteasome

A protein complex that degrades cellular proteins by proteolysis. Lecture - Cell Import - Endocytosis

protein bodies

(PBs) cytoplasmic plant organelles that accumulate storage proteins in seeds, formed from endoplasmic reticulum or vacuole.

pemphigus

Human severe blistering skin disease caused by autoantibodies against desmosomal cadherins. Lecture - Cytoskeleton - Intermediate Filaments

S

septin

A highly conserved GTPase family found in fungi and animals implicated in a diversity of cellular processes including cytokinesis, formation of diffusion barriers and vesicle trafficking. Septin2 partially co-localises with actin bundles in mammalian interphase cells.

shiga toxin

A bacterial protein toxin produced by Shigella dysenteriae is transported directly from the plasma membrane to the endoplasmic reticulum by early endosomes and the Golgi apparatus. Lecture - Cell Import - Endocytosis | PMID: 11514628

U

ubiquitin

(Ub) PMID: 17689064

W

Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (WASP)

T

trans-Golgi network (TGN)

trypanosomes

Unicellular protozoan parasites that infect humans, animals, insects, and plants. Lecture - Eukaryotes and Prokaryotes | PMID: 18462016

V

verotoxins

Bacterial protein toxins produced by enterohemorrhagic strains of Escherichia coli these are transported directly from the plasma membrane to the endoplasmic reticulum by early endosomes and the Golgi apparatus. Lecture - Cell Import - Endocytosis | PMID: 11514628