Staining of nuclear membrane in human cell line A-431 (HPA019661)
Scale bar represents 10µm
The nuclear membrane is a lipid bilayer surrounding the nucleus and isolating it from the cytoplasm. This allows separate molecular progresses in the two compartments and secures a highly controlled gene expression in the nucleus. The outer membrane is continuous with the endoplasmic reticulum, whereas the inner membrane serves as a anchoring site for chromatin. The space between the inner and outer membrane is called the perinuclear space. Nuclear pore complexes are distributed throughout the membrane and enable a selective transport of large molecules between the nucleus and cytoplasm.
The nuclear membrane is easy to recognize as its staining appears as a thin circle around the nucleus. However, the nuclear membrane is not perfectly smooth and sometimes it is also possible to see the folds of the membrane as small circles or dots inside the nucleus, which can easily be mistaken as nuclear bodies.