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Lipid Structure and Composition Control Consequences of Interleaflet Coupling in Asymmetric Vesicles.

Biophysical journal (2018-08-08)
Qing Wang, Erwin London

Using Förster resonance energy transfer, raft/liquid-ordered-domain formation was assessed in asymmetric vesicles containing outer leaflets composed of high-Tm (melting temperature) saturated phosphatidylcholines (diC18:0PC, diC16:0PC, diC15:0PC, or diC14:0PC), low-Tm unsaturated dioleoylphosphatidylcholine (DOPC) and cholesterol, and inner leaflets composed of lipids that by themselves would not form ordered domains (DOPC and cholesterol). Ordered-domain formation in the outer leaflet was compared to that in symmetric vesicles with the same lipid composition as the asymmetric vesicle outer leaflets. The difference between ordered-domain thermal stability in asymmetric and symmetric vesicles was highly dependent on high-Tm PC acyl-chain length. At one extreme, in diC14:0PC-containing asymmetric vesicles, the outer leaflet did not segregate to form ordered domains over the entire experimental temperature range even though ordered domains formed in the symmetric vesicles, indicating the inner leaflet dominated outer-leaflet physical behavior in the asymmetric vesicles. At the other extreme, in diC18:0PC-containing asymmetric vesicles, ordered domains formed over the entire temperature range at which they were present in symmetric vesicles, indicating the inner leaflet did not dominate outer-leaflet physical behavior. DiC15:0PC- and diC16:0PC-containing vesicles exhibited intermediate behaviors. A different set of vesicles was prepared with high-Tm lipid sphingomyelin (SM) in place of saturated phosphatidylcholine, and the % SM was varied. The thermal stability of outer-leaflet ordered domains in asymmetric vesicles was found to decrease more than in symmetric vesicles as SM levels decreased, indicating that the inner leaflet increasingly dominated outer leaflet physical state as SM levels decreased. Overall, inhibition of outer-leaflet ordered-domain formation in asymmetric vesicles by inner-leaflet lipids decreased as the ability of outer-leaflet lipids to form an ordered state by themselves increased, i.e., when outer-leaflet high-Tm lipid content or acyl-chain length increased. This has implications for how ordered-domain formation may be controlled in vivo.

Product Number
Product Description

1,2-Dioleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine, lyophilized powder
DPH, ≥98% (HPLC)
1,6-Diphenyl-1,3,5-hexatriene, 98%