Protection against dehydration.

Di Gioacchino M., Bruni F., Ricci M.A.

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A wide class of organisms can reversibly go through cycles of suspended life and active metabolism, depending on the turnover of drought and normal water availability conditions. The interest in the natural mechanism for drought survival has grown over time along with the request for always more efficient conservation techniques for biological materials. Carbohydrates, such as trehalose, accumulated in the cytoplasm of drought-resistant cells, are considered responsible for desiccation tolerance. Neutron diffraction experiments show that trehalose entraps a layer of water molecules in the first shell of a model peptide, without direct bonding with it.

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