Wondering Why?

Why do Phospholipids Form a Bi Layer?

Why do Phospholipids Form a Bi Layer?

Phospholipids are substances that make up the plasma membrane surrounding the cell. The phospho-lipid bi layer consists of proteins inserted in it. Phospholipids will arrange in a specific format when they are placed in water. The phospho lipid molecule consists of hydrophilic end which interacts with water and a hydrophobic end or fatty acid end which tends to move away from water and develop hydrophobic interactions with other phospho lipid molecules.

There are several structures that are attained by the phospholipids when they are put in water. One of those structures was lipid bi layer. The bi layer will form a circular structure that surrounds the water. The bi layer is formed when the two fatty acid chains of the phospholipids interact with each other to form a hydrophobic center of the bi layer.

The two fatty acid tails of the phospho lipid line up adjacent to each other and facing each other. This takes place to arrange them away from water. So, the heads of the phospholipids consisting of phosphate groups will always face water molecules which show the hydrophilic nature of the head region. The hydrophobic region will form the inside part of the bi layer to avoid water molecules to reach them. The bi layer will have the hydrophobic tails of the phospholipids in the center surrounded by phosphate heads. These heads will have connection with water as they are outside the bi layer. If the bi layer is not formed and only micelles existed then the water will not enter the side where hydrophobic ends are facing. So, the vesicle will not be filled with water. Hence, bi layer of phospholipids is formed to store water inside and outside the membrane touching only the hydrophilic ends or phosphate heads of the lipid bi layer.

This is the reason for the phospholipids to form bi layer.


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