I know that pumps always use ATP , but i don't know what is the relationship between carriers and pumps . are pumps a subdivision of carriers ?


Yes, you can consider pumps are carriers used for active transportation (needing ATP).

A carrier is a specific type of transport proteins. They differ from channels or pores in the fact that during a certain instant, carriers only have one side of the protein open1. While pores are continuously open, and channels are either open or closed2.

Carriers can be involved in active transport3 or facilitated diffusion (passive)4. But as you mentioned, pumps always are used for active transport. Pumps, as Bryan pointed out in the comments, are just a name given to some transport proteins that use active transport, but not all active transport proteins are labeled as pumps.

I hope this clarified things for you.

  • $\begingroup$ Not all pumps use ATP. Some things named pumps use ion gradients. It's not very precise terminology. $\endgroup$ – Bryan Krause Aug 9 '17 at 18:30
  • $\begingroup$ Would a more precise terminology be to remove "that use ATP to function" and replace it with active transport? As ion pumps using gradients would be using secondary active transportation. $\endgroup$ – Hawkeye Aug 9 '17 at 19:13
  • $\begingroup$ Yeah. I think the optimal answer would also address that "pumps" aren't a special protein category, just a naming convention for some proteins involved in active transport. Other proteins with nearly identical function are known by other names, like "transporters", without an obvious defining characteristic (that I am aware of). That is, all pumps use active transport, but not all active transporters are given the name "pump". Those that use ATP directly, like Na/K pump, are also known as "Na/K ATPase" etc. $\endgroup$ – Bryan Krause Aug 9 '17 at 21:21
  • $\begingroup$ thank you for your answers ; but i have another question ; 1- can we say that all pumps do a kind of active transport but don't need ATP , 2- can you give me an example of one transporter that do active transport but isn't a kind of pump ? – user35622 47 secs ago edit $\endgroup$ – user35622 Aug 15 '17 at 9:45
  • $\begingroup$ 1- All pumps do active transport, but not all use ATP to power (secondary active transport). 2- An example of a whole family of active transporters the don't use "pump" are the ABC Transporters (Wiki - ABC Transporter) $\endgroup$ – Hawkeye Aug 15 '17 at 14:08

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