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mistake in wiki:phospholipids?(biology people!)

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Alright everyone! I'm just writing up a few notes on cell membranes and got to writing a short piece on the Phospholipids. However when i checked out wikipedia to make sure i got the facts right they state:

"The "head" with hydrophobic built, adopts a lipophilic characteristic in the polar phospholipid area. The "tails" however are non-polar and they adopt a characteristic of hydrophilic"

Now shouldn't the bold (hydrophobic and hydrophilic) be the opposite way around? I'm sure that it is the heads which are hydrophilic and it is in fact the tails that are hydrophobic, hence why they point inwards towards one another.

Sorry for abit of a random question but i'm making sure i've got it right! Cheers.
post #2 of 13
You're right

The head is polar and hydrophilic

The tail is non-polar and hydrophobic.
post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
Great stuff cheers for the quick reply DanT! I'll have to see if i can get in touch with the author to get it corrected.
edit - just swapped the two around
post #4 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by GUNS View Post
[...]I'll have to see if i can get in touch with the author to get it corrected.
It's wikipedia anyone can edit whatever they want That why they are "reliable" in truth wikipedia tend to correct itself most of the time since they should be a large pool of user to spot and correct mistake

Just click on edit this article. I haven't done so before but it should work
post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
Yep i've done it now. However i have found yet another mistake! For the definition of Osmosis it states that:

"Osmosis is the spontaneous net movement of water across a semipermeable membrane from a region of high solute concentration to a solution with a low solute concentration, down a solute concentration gradient"

Osmosis is actually the net movement of water from a region of LOW solute concentration to a region of HIGH solute concentration.. Geez i'm starting to think i better not use wiki for any of my science work haha.
post #6 of 13
sometimes there is vandalism and people just do subtle changes to mess everyone up...
post #7 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by GUNS View Post
Geez i'm starting to think i better not use wiki for any of my science work haha.

LOL one thing you'll learn in science is don't trust completely anything unless you don't understand the principle behind it and how the guys came to that conclusion. Even some peer review paper have some shady conclusion sometime. Most stuff are fine tho.
post #8 of 13
No you shouldn't trust wiki. I don't think it's great for research.

But I use it anyhoo.
post #9 of 13
Wikipedia is like McDonalds...you know its not good for you, but you just cant help popping in

I wouldnt use wikipedia as the only source for any serious research. Wiki is popular and convenient, but its not worthy of the blind trust many people seem to give it for factual accuracy.
post #10 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by GUNS View Post
Great stuff cheers for the quick reply DanT! I'll have to see if i can get in touch with the author to get it corrected.
edit - just swapped the two around
I don't think you can just swap it around.

"The "head" with hydrophilic built, adopts a lipophilic characteristic in the polar phospholipid area."

If it's hydrophilic, it would be lipophobic.
post #11 of 13
you're right. why would the heads be hydrophobic if they are the ones contacting the water? =D
post #12 of 13
A study published in Feburary this year in Nature suggests that entries in Wikipedia are in general respectably accurate (you'll have to have a paid account to read this article though). However, citing Wikipedia as an academic reference is still inadvisable, if only because the articles may change over time, and their authorship difficult to trace.
post #13 of 13
this is why wikipedia is NOT a trusted source. my students are not allowed to use wikipedia in any of their research papers.
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