Lateral diffusion in biological membranes. A normal-mode analysis of diffusion on a spherical surface

D. E. Koppel, Michael Sheetz, M. Schindler

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A new approach is described for the analysis of lateral diffusion in biological membranes. It is shown that a suitably defined first moment of the concentration distribution on a spherical surface decays as a single exponential with a relaxation rate proportional to the diffusion coefficient and inversely proportional to the square of the radius of the sphere. The approach is illustrated with an example of fluorescence redistribution after photobleaching of membrane proteins in a spectrin-deficient spherocytic mouse erythrocyte membrane.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)187-192
Number of pages6
JournalBiophysical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1980
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics

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