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RAMON ANDRADE 3DCIENCIA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY RAMON ANDRADE 3DCIENCIA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Aquaporin membrane protein, molecular model. Computer illustration showing the structure of a molecule of the human aquaporin 1 protein (blue, and white ribbon). Aquaporins are membrane proteins that form channels (centre) that help water molecules (red and white spheres) pass in and out of cells. Unlike ion channels, aquaporins help prevent ions and other dissolved substances carrying electrical charge from entering the cell, as they only allow lone water molecules or certain uncharged solutes to pass through. This helps maintain the electrochemical potential of the cell membrane.
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