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Hydrophobic and hydrophilic interactions are important because many molecules in biology such as proteins and the molecules that make up the cell membrane have hydrophilic and hydrophobic regions on the same molecule.
When put in water these molecules automatically organize themselves into more complex and biologically useful structures. This process is termed self assembly.
It is illustrated in the diagram for a molecule with a polar head and
a non polar tail. We will see just such molecules invoved in cell membranes.
Study the diagram carefully. Can you figure out why the micelle forms when
these molecules are put in water?
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pgd: revised 06/19/02