Talking Glossary of Genetic Terms
A nuclear membrane is a double membrane that encloses the cell nucleus. It serves to separate the chromosomes from the rest of the cell. The nuclear membrane includes an array of small holes or pores that permit the passage of certain materials, such as nucleic acids and proteins, between the nucleus and cytoplasm.
The nuclear membrane. When we divide the organisms that live on this planet, we make a distinction between those that have a nucleus, that are called eukaryotes, and those that don't have a nuclei, which we call prokaryotes. The nucleus contains all of the genetic material for a eukaryotic cell, but this genetic material needs to be protected. And it's protected by the nuclear membrane, which is a double membrane that encloses all the nuclear genetic material and all the other components of the nucleus. There are some small holes or pores that are in the nuclear membrane that allow the messenger RNA and the proteins to move between the nucleus and the cytoplasm. But the nuclear membrane is regulating what material should be in the nucleus in contrast to what material should be in the cytoplasm.
Name: Julie A. Segre, Ph.D.
Occupation: Senior Investigator, Genetics and Molecular Biology Branch; Head, Epithelial Biology Section
Biography: Dr. Segre's research focuses on the dynamic process by which the epidermis maintains a proper balance between proliferation and differentiation. Combining classical genetics techniques and modern genomic tools, her laboratory uses mouse models to investigate the function of novel genes important for in utero human epidermal development, normal wound healing and skin regeneration. The epidermis acts as a barrier to infectious agents and protects against the loss of critical bodily fluids. However, in infants born prematurely, immaturity of the skin places them at great risk of disease and early death.