Diameter of the cell-to-cell junctional membrane channels as probed with neutral molecules

Science. 1981 Jul 31;213(4507):551-3. doi: 10.1126/science.7244653.


The cell-to-cell channels in the junctions of an insect salivary gland and of insect and mammalian cells in culture were probed with fluorescent molecules-neutral linear oligosaccharides, neutral branched glycopeptides, and charged linear peptides. From the molecular dimensions of the largest permeants and smallest impermeants the permeation-limiting channel diameter was obtained: 16 to 20 angstroms for the mammalian cells and 20 to 30 angstroms for the insect cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Line
  • Chironomidae
  • Fluorescent Dyes
  • Glycopeptides / metabolism*
  • Intercellular Junctions / ultrastructure*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Models, Molecular
  • Oligosaccharides / metabolism*
  • Protein Conformation
  • Salivary Glands / ultrastructure*
  • Species Specificity


  • Fluorescent Dyes
  • Glycopeptides
  • Oligosaccharides