Caveolae: A Once-Elusive Structure Gets Some Respect

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Science  30 Nov 2001:
Vol. 294, Issue 5548, pp. 1862-1865
DOI: 10.1126/science.294.5548.1862

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Cell biologists usually focus on proteins and the genes that encode them when trying to figure out how cells regulate their many activities. But lipids, particularly when organized in distinct membrane microdomains known as caveolae and rafts, can also play important roles, such as transporting materials into and through cells and organizing the cell's signal transduction pathways. Science takes a look at these functions and also at the ongoing controversy about how many are performed by caveolae as opposed to rafts.