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connexons

Pronunciation: ko-neks'onz

Definition: Complex protein assemblies that traverse the lipid bilayer of the plasma membrane and form a continuous channel with a pore diameter of approximately 1.5 nm; a pair of connexons from two adjacent cells join to form a gap junction that bridges the 2–4-nm gap between the cells, resulting in both electrical and metabolic couplings; one type of connexons makes up the gap junction in the heart and may coordinate the beating of all muscle cells in one section of the heart.

See Also: connexins

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© Copyright 2017 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review Date: Sep 19, 2016.
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