Biochemical and biophysical research communications

Importance of phospholipid bilayer integrity in the analysis of protein-lipid interactions.

PMID 25264195


The integrity of supported phospholipid bilayer membranes is of crucial importance for the investigation of lipid-protein interactions. Therefore we recorded the formation of supported membranes on SiO2 and mica by quartz crystal microbalance and controlled the integrity by atomic force microscopy. This study aims to analyze how membrane defects affect protein-lipid interactions. The experiments focused on a lipid mixture of POPC/DOPC/Chol/POPS/PI(4,5)P2 (37:20:20:20:3) and the binding of the peripheral membrane associated protein annexin A2. We found that formation of a continuous undisturbed bilayer is an indispensable precondition for a reliable determination and quantification of lipid-protein-interactions. If membrane defects were present, protein adsorption causes membrane disruption and lipid detachment on a support thus leading to false determination of binding constants. Our results obtained for PI(4,5)P2 and cholesterol containing supported membranes yield new knowledge to construct functional surfaces that may cover nanoporous substrates, form free standing membranes or may be used for lab-on-a-chip applications.