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Science Forum

  1. 15 Oct '11 17:42
    In the Lac operator of E. Coli, the repressor proteins are on the operator when there is no Lactose present in the cell, this prevents the encoding of Lac Y (β-galactoside permease) that brings Lactose into the cell. So, if there is Lactose present outside the cell, how does the lactose get into the cell if there is no membrane bound transport system (because Lac Y is not being transcribed)?
  2. Standard member mikelom
    Ajarn
    15 Oct '11 20:33
    Originally posted by mlprior
    In the Lac operator of E. Coli, the repressor proteins are on the operator when there is no Lactose present in the cell, this prevents the encoding of Lac Y (β-galactoside permease) that brings Lactose into the cell. So, if there is Lactose present outside the cell, how does the lactose get into the cell if there is no membrane bound transport system (because Lac Y is not being transcribed)?
    Ask an endocrinologist pls.

    -m.
  3. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Do ya think?
    16 Oct '11 01:42
    According to Wikipedia it's because there are never enough repressor molecules to go around, so the molecules are always being produced. When lactose is present, however, it will neutralize more repressor molecules, speeding up the process.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lac_repressor#Function

    An astute observer might wonder how allolactose could bind LacI if the genes necessary for the conversion of lactose to allolactose are under the control of the lac promoter. It turns out that the number of repressor molecules in a bacterium is low enough that at any given time, some percentage of the cells will not have enough to inhibit transcription. This is an example of biological noise. Given time, more cells in a culture will transiently have no LacI inhibition and will express the lac operon, temporarily conferring the ability to take up lactose and convert it into allolactose. This allolactose binds LacI, increasing the probability of more transcripts being made. This positive feedback loop allows for a small signal (cytoplasmic allolactose concentration) to be amplified and induce a significant change in the cell's gene expression profile. This induced state is epigenetic and somewhat heritable: in cell division, each daughter cell will likely have enough inducer to bind and deactivate LacI.
  4. 16 Oct '11 04:09
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    According to Wikipedia it's because there are never enough repressor molecules to go around, so the molecules are always being produced. When lactose is present, however, it will neutralize more repressor molecules, speeding up the process.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lac_repressor#Function

    An astute observer might wonder how allolactose co ...[text shortened]... division, each daughter cell will likely have enough inducer to bind and deactivate LacI.
    Nice!

    I thought for a minute that you wrote that end part.....