Langmuir : the ACS journal of surfaces and colloids

Effects of Al(3+) on Phosphocholine and Phosphoglycerol Containing Solid Supported Lipid Bilayers.

PMID 26783873


Aluminum has attracted great attention recently as it has been suggested by several studies to be associated with increased risks for Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. The toxicity of the trivalent ion is assumed to derive from structural changes induced in lipid bilayers upon binding, though the mechanism of this process is still not well understood. In the present study we elucidate the effect of Al(3+) on supported lipid bilayers (SLBs) using fluorescence microscopy, the quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation (QCM-D) technique, dual-polarization interferometry (DPI), and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Results from these techniques show that binding of Al(3+) to SLBs containing negatively charged and neutral phospholipids induces irreversible changes such as domain formation. The measured variations in SLB thickness, birefringence, and density indicate a phase transition from a disordered to a densely packed ordered phase.