Proteins are the workhorses of the cell. They are involved in virtually every cellular process, including cell signaling, cell adhesion, and cell motility. Proteins are also important in the immune system and in many other aspects of human physiology. Proteins are large biomolecules, or macromolecules, consisting of one or more long chains of amino acid residues. Proteins perform a vast array of functions within organisms, including catalysing metabolic reactions, DNA replication, responding to stimuli, and transporting molecules from one location to another. Proteins differ from one another primarily in their sequence of amino acids, which is dictated by the nucleotide sequence of their genes, and which usually results in folding of the protein into a specific three-dimensional structure that determines its activity. The sequence of amino acids in a protein is defined by the sequence of a gene encoding this protein. In humans, proteins are encoded by 20,00025,000 genes; these genes occupy about 1% of the human genome.
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