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The molecular mechanism of phospholipid phase transitions studied by far infrared spectroscopy

Project Member(s): Dowd, A.

Funding or Partner Organisation: Australian Synchrotron Research Program (Australian Synchrotron Beamline)
Australian Synchrotron Research Program (Australian Synchrotron Beamline)

Start year: 2023

Summary: The cell membrane is a self-assembled double layer structure of lipid molecules. From the physical chemistry point of view there are still unanswered questions about lipid packing in different phases. We will develop a method to characterise lipid packing in fully hydrated lipid bilayers using far-infrared spectroscopy. This frequency range allows us to simultaneously monitor signals from the different parts of the lipid molecules, the hydrogen bonding network, and the bound water molecules. Studies with this technique will contribute to our understanding of lipid bilayer stability, "chain melting", effects of different ionic environments and membrane perturbation by antimicrobial peptides.

Publications:

Chng, C-P, Dowd, A, Mechler, A & Hsia, KJ, 'Molecular dynamics simulations reliably identify vibrational modes in far-IR spectra of phospholipids', Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics.
View/Download from: Publisher's site

FOR Codes: Biological physics, Receptors and membrane biology, Physical chemistry, Expanding knowledge in the biological sciences, Expanding knowledge in the chemical sciences, Expanding knowledge in the physical sciences