Cell membrane diseases are life-threatening disorders that are genetic in nature, and they usually work against proteins in our body that are key to ion channels and various receptors within the membrane. These diseases work by either disrupting the normal functions of the cells or by simply affecting the cell membrane. Many of these disorders contain other components as well.
Hyaline Membrane Disease
Commonly associated with preterm infants, Hyaline membrane disease affects the lungs at the time of birth, thus causing respiratory distress. As a result, the lungs require a normal level of oxygen and carbon dioxide exchange after birth.
The oxidative stress caused by Alzheimer's disease in the brain results in phospholipid altercations. Phospholipids are a key component of our cell membranes. These altercations compromise the cell membrane, therefore disrupting the function of the brain cells.
Cystic fibrosis is a disease that brings about an excessive production of fluid in the lungs due to a defective calcium-ion channel. This channel contains a protein that is important to the cell membrane of our lungs. The calcium-ion channel controls the level of fluids and mucus in our lungs. When this channel mutates into cystic fibrosis, it causes the mucus to build up in the lungs, thus making it hard to breath.
Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy
This disease affects dystrophin in the muscle cell. Dystrophin allows the muscle cell wall to connect with the intracellular section. In the absence of dystrophin, the cell membrane would be incapable of repairing itself, thus destroying it and bringing about Duchenne muscular dystrophy.