Non-Bovine Caseins: Quantitative Variability and Molecular Diversity

  • P. Martin
  • P. Ferranti
  • C. Leroux
  • F. Addeo


Caseins are phosphoproteins synthesised by mammary epithelial cells under multi-hormonal control as more or less large and stable particles, referred to as casein micelles and which appear like raspberries in electron micrographs. These spherical particles seem to be the result of aggregation of smaller discrete subunits or submicelles (Schmidt, 1982; Walstra, 1990), cemented by a calcium phosphate salt (colloidal calcium phosphate). Although this casein micelle model is widely accepted, it remains, in some circumstances, a topic of discussion and controversial debate. This issue will be dealt with in detail elsewhere in this book (Chapters 1 and 5). Casein micelles are present in the milk of all mammals and have a statistically broad distribution in size (Holt, 1985, 1992). In bovine milk, the most thoroughly studied milk to date, the casein micelle is considered to be comprised of submicelles, made of several casein molecules (15 to 20; Schmidt, 1982), arising from the expression of four single-copy autosomal genes which encode four distinct polypeptide chains (αs1-, β-, αs2- and κ-caseins).


Water Buffalo Casein Micelle Camel Milk Casein Gene Nonsense Codon 
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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. Martin
  • P. Ferranti
  • C. Leroux
  • F. Addeo

There are no affiliations available

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