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glycolipids

Saturday 11 March 2006

Definition: Glycolipids are carbohydrate-attached lipids. Their role is to provide energy and also serve as markers for cellular recognition.

During their biosynthesis, a carbohydrate chain is associated with phospholipids in the cell surface membrane. The carbohydrates are found on the outer surface of all eukaryotic cell membranes.

They extend from the phospholipid bilayer into the aqueous environment outside the cell where it acts as a recognition site for specific chemicals as well as helping to maintain the stability of the membrane and attaching cells to one another to form tissues.

Types

- glycosphingolipids (> glycosphingolipidoses)

  • cerebrosides (> cerebrosidoses)
    • galactocerebrosides (> galactocerebrosidosis)
    • glucocerebrosides (> glucocerebrosidosis)
  • gangliosides (> gangliosidosis)
  • globosides
  • sulfatides (> sulfatidosis)
  • glycophosphosphingolipids

- galactolipids
- sulfolipids (SQDG)

See also

- Lipids