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Lechner B.-D.,Institute For Chemie Physikalische Chemie | Ebert H.,Martin Luther University of Halle Wittenberg | Prehm M.,Institute For Chemie Physikalische Chemie | Prehm M.,Martin Luther University of Halle Wittenberg | And 8 more authors.
Langmuir | Year: 2015

Polyphilic compound B12 is an X-shaped molecule with a stiff aromatic core, flexible aliphatic side chains, and hydrophilic end groups. Forming a thermotropic triangular honeycomb phase in the bulk between 177 and 182 °C but no lyotropic phases, it is designed to fit into DPPC or DMPC lipid bilayers, in which it phase separates at room temperature, as observed in giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs) by fluorescence microscopy. TEM investigations of bilayer aggregates support the incorporation of B12 into intact membranes. The temperature-dependent behavior of the mixed samples was followed by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), FT-IR spectroscopy, fluorescence spectroscopy, and X-ray scattering. DSC results support in-membrane phase separation, where a reduced main transition and new B12-related transitions indicate the incorporation of lipids into the B12-rich phase. The phase separation was confirmed by X-ray scattering, where two different lamellar repeat distances are visible over a wide temperature range. Polarized ATR-FTIR and fluorescence anisotropy experiments support the transmembrane orientation of B12, and FT-IR spectra further prove a stepwise "melting" of the lipid chains. The data suggest that in the B12-rich domains the DPPC chains are still rigid and the B12 molecules interact with each other via π-π interactions. All results obtained at temperatures above 75°C confirm the formation of a single, homogeneously mixed phase with freely mobile B12 molecules. © 2015 American Chemical Society. Source

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