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A phosphatidylcholine is shown here containing oleyl and stearoyl side chains.

Phosphatidylcholines are a class of phospholipids that incorporate choline as a headgroup. They are a major component of biological membranes and can be isolated from either egg yolk (in Greek lekithos - λεκιθος) or soy beans from which they are mechanically extracted or chemically extracted using hexane.

Phosphatidylcholine (sometimes abbreviated as PC) is more common on the exoplasmic or outer leaflet of a cell membrane.

Phosphatidylcholines are such a major component of lecithin, that, in some contexts, the terms are sometimes used as synonyms. However, lecithin extract consists of a mixture of phosphatidylcholine and other compounds. It is also used along with sodium taurocholate for simulating fed- and fasted-state biorelevant media in dissolution studies of highly-lipophilic drugs. Phosphatidylcholine is a major constituent of cell membranes, and also plays a role in membrane-mediated cell signalling.

Phospholipase D catalyzes the hydrolysis of phosphatidylcholine to form phosphatidic acid (PA), releasing the soluble choline headgroup into the cytosol.

Some medical researchers are experimenting with injection lipolysis, using injected phosphatidylcholine to try to break down fat cells, as an alternative to liposuction.

Molecular weight: 760.09 g/mol. (http://www.jenabioscience.com/images/5103fef174/LI-004.pdf)

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