The cytoplasmic membrane is a phospholipid bilayer embedded with a variety of different proteins. It serves as a barrier between the cell and the surrounding environment, allowing relatively few types of molecules to pass through freely. The electron transport chain within the membrane expels protons, generating proton motive force.

■ Explain the fluid mosaic model.

■ Name three molecules that can pass freely through the lipid bilayer.

■ Why is the word fluid in fluid mosaic model an appropriate term?

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