Spontaneous curvature of fluid vesicles induced by trans-bilayer sugar asymmetry

Döbereiner, Hans-Günther; Selchow, Olaf; Lipowsky, Reinhard
January 1999
European Biophysics Journal;1999, Vol. 28 Issue 2, p174
Academic Journal
Abstract We present measurements of the effective spontaneous curvature of fluid lipid bilayers as a function of trans-bilayer asymmetry. Experiments are performed on micrometer-scale vesicles in sugar solutions with varying species across the membrane. There are two effects leading to a preferred curvature of such a vesicle. The spontaneous curvatures of the two monolayers as well as their area difference combine into an effective spontaneous curvature of the membrane. Our technique for measuring this parameter allows us to use vesicle morphology as a probe for general membrane-solute interactions affecting elasticity.


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