Despite having evolved a lot in recent years, slashing terrain into the unknown, the study of cells and their functions is relatively recent. Given the minimum dimensions of all these elements; cells, amino acids, molecules or proteins, the history of its research has been linked to technological innovations that have been able to facilitate its study.
From the first and rudimentary compound lenses of the seventeenth century to the various microscopic tools that were invented in the nineteenth century, it was not until the last century that the correct tools for their study could be developed, with which we can now know much more about their functioning.
In the following FastlyHealarticle we will give you the definition of motor protein , while we will explain the context that surrounds them, so that you can know what their functions are.
Table of Contents
What are proteins
Proteins are biomolecules created from the chained union of amino acids and that, due to their physical and chemical properties, can be classified into different groups. On the one hand we find the holoproteids , which are simple proteins, only formed by acids, on the other hand we have the heteroproteids , the conjugated proteins, which are formed by amino acids plus other substances and, finally, the derived proteins , biomolecules formed from of denaturation and cleavage of the above protein types.
Proteins fulfill vital functions for life , above all they have an essential role in the plastic function of the organism. It must be taken into account that up to 80% of the dehydrated protoplasm of a cell is made up of proteins, so it is not surprising that they play a leading role in many of the body’s functions:
- Their most important function is plastic , they are essential for the movement, contraction and retraction of the muscles.
- Proteins also fulfill regulatory functions , as they are part of enzymes, they intervene in their chemical processes.
- What we commonly call antibodies are actually also proteins, so the protection and defense of the body’s health must also be counted as one of its functions.
Proteins are, of the molecules that are in our body, the most versatile and those that can develop more different roles, intervening in all the processes that occur in our body, therefore, each of these biomolecules receives a different name, attending to its function and its nature.
What is the cytoskeleton
The cytoskeleton is a three-dimensional network and an organelle that serves as a support structure in eurkaryotic cells , organizing them internally and intervening in cell transport and division. The cytoskeleton is a dynamic structure that, based on flagella and cilia, makes it possible for cells to move ; both within the cell itself, and outside of it, as to divide and reproduce.
But how can they move? What molecules are involved in this movement? It is at this point that motor proteins come to light. All cells have movements in their bosom that, in general, can occur in two different ways; or by the permanent structures that are formed from the association of cilia and flagella or by motor proteins, such as actin and myosin, which give it its characteristic contractile movement.
These proteins participate both in the maintenance of the organization of the cytoskeleton, as well as in cell mobility and the internal movement of the different parts of the cell.
What are motor proteins
At this point and having clear all the context in which they move and originate, we can already give a precise definition of what motor proteins are. Motor proteins are molecules that cause muscle contraction and retraction , contribute to intracellular transport and also have functions in the movement and division of cells . This type of protein transforms chemical energy into mechanical energy when they move through the filaments of the cytoskeleton.
Actin and myosin are some examples of these two proteins, from the interaction of which muscle movements arise in many vertebrates.
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