Hydrophobic

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The term hydrophobic (hydro="water", phobic="fearing") is used to describe molecules that will not interact with water. Such molecules can also be known as lipophilic (fat-loving). Hydrophobic molecules are usually neutral and non-polar and so will not dissolve in polar solvents such as water[1]. Instead, hydrophobic molecules are inclined to group together to avoid associating with water[2]. This is a key feature in the phospholipid bilayers[3] of cell membranes. Examples of hydrophobic substances include fats, oils and alkanes

Hydrophilic molecules are able to interact with water through hydrogen bonding[4].

References

  1. Bruce Alberts, Alexander Johnson, Julian Lewis, Martin Raff, Keith Roberts, Peter Walter, (2008) Molecular Biology of the Cell, 5th edition, Page 620, New York: Garland Science
  2. Jeremy M. Berg, John L. Tymoczko, Lubert Stryer (2007), Biochemistry 6th Edition, Page 28, New York: W. H. Freeman and Company
  3. Bruce Alberts, Alexander Johnson, Julian Lewis, Martin Raff, Keith Roberts, Peter Walter, (2008) Molecular Biology of the Cell, 5th edition, Page 620, New York: Garland Science
  4. http://www.biology-online.org/dictionary/Hydrophilic
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