The key difference between alpha beta and gamma globulins is that alpha and beta globulins act as enzymes and transport proteins through the blood while gamma globulins act as antibodies and hep in the immune responses and defending against antigen invasion.
Globulins are simple globular proteins found in the serum. They are major blood proteins and account for half of the blood proteins. These proteins are involved in several functions in the blood such as transporting metabolites and metals, functioning as immunoglobulins, working as enzymes, etc. Most globulin proteins are synthesized in the liver and immunoglobulins are produced by plasma cells. Some globulins are immunologically active and they are referred to as immunoglobulins or popular antibodies. Other globulin proteins act as carrier proteins, enzymes and complements in the blood. There are three major groups of globulin proteins as alpha, beta and gamma globulins.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What are Alpha Globulins
3. What are Beta Globulins
4. What are Gamma Globulins
5. Similarities Between Alpha Beta and Gamma Globulins
6. Side by Side Comparison – Alpha Beta vs Gamma Globulins in Tabular Form
What are Alpha Globulins?
Alpha globulins are a type of globulin proteins present in the blood serum. The synthesis of alpha proteins takes place in the liver. There are two types of alpha globulins as alpha 1 and alpha 2. Structurally they differ slightly from each other. But functionally they carry out the same function.
Alpha globulins work as enzymes. They also carry hormones, cholesterol, and copper through the bloodstream. Moreover, they work to help or prevent the actions of other enzymes.
What are Beta Globulins?
Beta globulins are another type of serum proteins which are similar in structure to alpha globulins. They are also produced in the liver. There are two types of globular proteins as beta 1 and beta 2. Beta globulins also carry out several functions which are similar to alpha globulin proteins. Beta globulins transport hormones, lipids and cholesterol through the bloodstream. They also assist the immune system to fight against invading bacteria, viruses and parasites.
What are Gamma Globulins?
Gamma globulins are the third type of serum globulins. Unlike in alpha and beta globulins, the synthesis of gamma globulins does not take place in the liver. Gamma globulin production takes place by the immune cells – lymphocytes and plasma cells. They act as antibodies. Therefore, they are immunoglobulins.
When the immune system needs, lymphocytes and plasma cells produce these gamma globulins or antibodies to interact with antigens that come from outside. Hence, gamma globulins or immunoglobulins are responsible for immune responses and immunity.
What are the Similarities Between Alpha Beta and Gamma Globulins?
- Alpha, beta and gamma globulins are the three main types of globulins.
- They are serum proteins.
What is the Difference Between Alpha Beta and Gamma Globulins?
Alpha globulins are a type of serum globulins produced in the liver, while beta globulins are another type of globulins present in the blood. Meanwhile, gamma globulins are immunoglobulins that work as antibodies. So, this explains the key difference between alpha beta and gamma globulins. Alpha and beta globulins work as enzymes, but gamma globulins do not work as enzymes. Moreover, gamma globulins work as antibodies and involve in immune responses while alpha and beta globulins do not.
Below infographic tabulates the difference between alpha beta and gamma globulins.
Summary – Alpha Beta vs Gamma Globulins
Globulins are one of the major proteins found in the blood. Alpha, beta and gamma are three types of blood globulins. Our liver produces both alpha and beta globulins. In contrast, gamma globulins are produced by the lymphocytes and plasma cells in response to immune response. Alpha globulins act as enzymes and transport different substance through the blood. Similarly, beta globulins transport proteins in the blood. Gamma globulins are immunoglobulins or antibodies that play a vital role in the immune system. So, this is the summary of the difference between alpha beta and gamma globulins.
1. “Electrophoresis” By Jfdwolff at en.wikipedia – Transferred from en.wikipedia (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Antibody” By Fvasconcellos 19:03, 6 May 2007 (UTC) – Color version of Image:Antibody.png, originally a Work of the United States Government (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia