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Annu Rev Cell Dev Biol. 2014;30:39-58. doi: 10.1146/annurev-cellbio-100913-013325.

Liquid-liquid phase separation in biology.

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Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics Dresden, and.


Cells organize many of their biochemical reactions in non-membrane compartments. Recent evidence has shown that many of these compartments are liquids that form by phase separation from the cytoplasm. Here we discuss the basic physical concepts necessary to understand the consequences of liquid-like states for biological functions.


P granules; biological liquids; chemical potential; origin of life; phase separation

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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