Methods of Isolation and Characterization of Bacterial Membranes

  • Milton R. J. Salton


It is now well documented that the major structural features (apart from size and shape) distinguishing prokaryotic bacterial cells from eukaryotic cells relate to the nature and organization of membrane systems, the nucleus, and the “packaging” of functions in membranous organelles. Anatomically, the majority of bacterial cells are relatively undifferentiated with respect to intracellular membrane-bound structures. Thus the bacterial nucleus lacks a nuclear membrane, there are no separate mitochondrial organelles, and the respiratory functions are localized in the multifunctional plasma membrane of the bacterial cell. A membranous endoplasmic reticulum similar to that of eukaryotic cells is not seen, although evidence has been presented for the organization of the ribosomes on a fine supporting structure or matrix of smaller dimensions (Schlessinger et al, 1965; van Iterson, 1965). Other membrane-bounded organelles such as the Golgi apparatus and lysosomes are absent, although there have been suggestions, along with a great number of others, that the mesosomes may fulfill some of these cellular functions (for review, see Ellar, 1970; Stanier, 1970; Salton, 1971a,b; Ghosh, 1974).


Outer Membrane Membrane Fraction Bacterial Membrane Bacillus Megaterium Purple Membrane 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1976

Authors and Affiliations

  • Milton R. J. Salton
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of MicrobiologyNew York University School of MedicineNew YorkUSA

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