Lamichhane, Gyanu Department of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland.
- Prominent biochemical features
- Significance to bacterial cell physiology
- Significance to human health
- Significance to treatment of bacterial infections
- Links to Primary Literature
- Additional Readings
A macromolecule that encapsulates the plasma membrane and is required for the growth and survival of virtually all bacteria. Although peptidoglycan is historically referred to as a layer (see illustration), it is actually a three-dimensional macromolecule in bacteria. As an exoskeleton, peptidoglycan is the primary determinant of the overall shape of bacterial cells, providing rigidity to the bacterial cell wall. In addition, it supports several physiological functions in bacteria. See also: Bacteria; Bacterial growth; Bacterial physiology and metabolism; Bacteriology; Cell membranes; Microbiology
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