Phospholipids are the main component of the plasma membrane; What are the characteristics of phospholipids?

Phospholipids are the main component of the plasma membrane, the outermost layer of animal cells. Like fat, phospholipids are made up of chains of fatty acids attached to the glycerol backbone. Unlike triglycerides, which have three fatty acids, phospholipids have two fatty acids which help form diacylglycerol. The third carbon glycerol backbone is also occupied by modified phosphate groups.

However, only the phosphate groups bound to diacylglycerol do not qualify as phospholipids. This will be considered a phosphatidate (diacylglycerol 3-phosphate), the predecessor of phospholipids. To qualify as a phospholipid, the phosphate group must be modified by alcohol. Phosphatidyl choline and Phosphatidylserine are examples of two important phospholipids found in the plasma membrane.
However, only the phosphate groups bound to diacylglycerol do not qualify as phospholipids. This will be considered a phosphatidate (diacylglycerol 3-phosphate), the predecessor of phospholipids. To qualify as a phospholipid, the phosphate group must be modified by alcohol. Phosphatidyl choline and Phosphatidylserine are examples of two important phospholipids found in the plasma membrane. 

The characteristics of phospholipids are:

  1. Phospholipids are the main component of membranes.
  2. Phospholipids are lipid compounds. They contain other than fatty acids and glycerol / or other alcohols, phosphoric acid residues, nitrogen-containing bases, and other substituents.
  3. Phospholipids can be considered as derivatives of phosphatidic acid, in which phosphate is esterified with -OH from the corresponding alcohol.
  4. Phospholipids are amphiphatic molecules containing polar heads and hydrophobic parts.
  5. Phospholipids are amphiphatic molecules, polar heads formed by alcohols, phosphoric acids and nitrogen bases, hydrophobic parts formed by fatty acids.

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