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With different cell types, and cell functions, are there distinct levels of cholesterol in each cell type's cell membrane, or do all cell types have a similar amount of cholesterol?

I am assuming certain cell types require different levels of cell membrane stability, and as such, different levels of cholesterol in that cell membrane.

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Yes, there are differences in cell membrane's cholesterol levels among different human cell types.

This table from Alberts (2002) shows the difference in cholesterol composition in a liver cell, a red blood cell and a Schwann cell/oligodendrocyte (myelin):

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Table: Approximate Lipid Compositions of Different Cell Membranes

Besides that, the table shows that there is difference in the cholesterol composition among different membranes in the same cell (compare plasma membrane, mitochondrion and ER). Actually, that's a more famous difference, depicted in this figure from Lehninger (2000):

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Figure: Lipid composition of the plasma membrane and organelle membranes of a rat hepatocyte. The functional specialization of each membrane type is reflected in its unique lipid composition. Cholesterol is prominent in plasma membranes but barely detectable in mitochondrial membranes.

Sources:

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You're right, different cells have different quantities of cholesterol within the membrane. For example a red blood cell will have more cholesterol in it's membrane compared to an epithelial cell in the small intestine. This would be because the blood cell is free floating within the body rather than being physically adhered to something, so a greater level of stability is needed. It is solely dependent on the cells function.

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    $\begingroup$ Thank you for the answer! can you provide any links to literature that provide evidence of this? $\endgroup$ – Eric McGhee Jun 17 '17 at 22:57

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