The Open University since 2006
Alternatively you can skip the navigation by pressing 'Enter'.
Frozen Planet: WinterFriday, 29th April 2016 11:00 - EdenTemperatures plummet to 70 below - and the Poles become unforgiving places Read more: Frozen Planet: Winter
Frozen Planet: WinterFriday, 29th April 2016 16:00 - Eden
Frozen Planet: WinterFriday, 29th April 2016 21:00 - Eden Eden
Thinking Allowed 2016: The Flaneur - Walking in the CityMonday, 2nd May 2016 00:15 - BBC Radio 4
Everyday Miracles: The Genius of Sofas, Stockings & Scanners: AwayAvailable until Saturday, 28th May 2016 21:00Professor Mark Miodownik concludes his odyssey of the stuff of modern life. Read more: Everyday Miracles: The Genius of Sofas, Stockings & Scanners: Away
Thinking Allowed 2016: The Flaneur - Walking in the CityAvailable for over a year
All in the Mind - Summer 2016: All in the Mind Awards and psychology in filmsAvailable for over a year
Thinking Allowed 2016: Happiness and government, Good parentingAvailable for over a year
Turn your bank holiday into a badged holidayWhat are your plans for the long weekend? DIY? A trip to a windswept beach? Why not take your... Read more: Turn your bank holiday into a badged holiday
OpenLearn Live: 28th April 2016The chieftan who shaped the Zulu nation. Then more learning across the day. Read more: OpenLearn Live: 28th April 2016
Energy in buildingsThemes covered in this free course, Energy in buildings, include reducing heating demand in... Try: Energy in buildings now
Introduction to bookkeeping and accountingLearn about the essential numerical skills required for accounting and bookkeeping. This free... Try: Introduction to bookkeeping and accounting now
Where does the structure of our body come from? This free course, Structural materials in cells, looks at the structure of cells and how proteins are used by both animals and plants to create a framework for cellular growth. You will also learn how a material as fine as spider silk can exceed the strength of steel.
After studying this course, you should be able to:
- describe and give examples of how self-assembly enables construction ‘from the bottom up’ in natural materials
- explain what is meant by primary and higher-order structure in proteins and give examples
- give examples of the range of functions carried out by proteins within cells
- describe how a combination of strong and weak bonding within biopolymers and lipids is used to build hierarchical structures with common structural elements and finely tuned properties, including calculations where appropriate
- explain how both positive and negative design principles must be applied to the design of molecular devices and comment on the challenges involved in attempting such design.
Study this free course
Enrol to access the full course, get recognition for the skills you learn, track your progress and on completion gain a statement of participation to demonstrate your learning to others. Make your learning visible!
Structural materials in cells
This unit examines how self-assembled structures based on lipids and proteins provide a framework for cellular processes.
This OpenLearn course is an adapted extract from the Open University course T356.
Copyright & revisions
Originally published: Thursday, 17th March 2016
Last updated on: Thursday, 17th March 2016
- Creative-Commons: The Open University is proud to release this free course under a Creative Commons licence. However, any third-party materials featured within it are used with permission and are not ours to give away. These materials are not subject to the Creative Commons licence. See terms and conditions. Full details can be found in the Acknowledgements and our FAQs section.
- This site has Copy Reuse Tracking enabled - see our FAQs for more information.
If you enjoyed this, why not follow a feed to find out when we have new things like it? Choose an RSS feed from the list below. (Don't know what to do with RSS feeds?)
Remember, you can also make your own, personal feed by combining tags from around OpenLearn.
All our alternative formats are free for you to download, for more information about the different formats we offer please see our FAQs. The most frequently used are Word (for accessibility), PDF (for print) and ePub and Kindle to download to eReaders*.
- Word (2 MB)
- PDF (2.7 MB)
- ePub 3.0 (1.5 MB)
- ePub 2.0 (1.5 MB)
- Kindle (592 KB)
- RSS (217 KB)
- HTML (1.1 MB)
- SCORM (1.1 MB)
- OUXML Package (29 KB)
- OUXML File (91 KB)
- IMS Common cartridge
*Please note you will need an ePub and Mobi reader for these formats.