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Biophys J. 2010 Apr 21;98(8):1529-38. doi: 10.1016/j.bpj.2009.12.4286.

Lipid and peptide dynamics in membranes upon insertion of n-alkyl-beta-D-glucopyranosides.

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  • 1Department of Bioengineering, Stanford University, Stanford, California, USA.


The effect of nonionic detergents of the n-alkyl-beta-D-glucopyranoside class on the ordering of lipid bilayers and the dynamics of membrane-embedded peptides were investigated with 2H- and 31P-NMR. 1,2-dipalmitoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine was selectively deuterated at methylene segments C-2, C-7, and C-16 of the two fatty acyl chains. Two trans-membrane helices, WALP-19 and glycophorin A(71-98), were synthesized with Ala-d3 in the central region of the alpha-helix. n-Alkyl-beta-D-glucopyranosides with alkyl chains with 6, 7, 8, and 10 carbon atoms were added at increasing concentrations to the lipid membrane. The bilayer structure is retained up to a detergent/lipid molar ratio of 1:1. The insertion of the detergents leads to a selective disordering of the lipids. The headgroup region remains largely unaffected; the fatty acyl chain segments parallel to the detergent alkyl chain are only modestly disordered (10-20%), whereas lipid segments beyond the methyl terminus of the detergent show a decrease of up to 50%. The change in the bilayer order profile corresponds to an increase in bilayer entropy. Insertion of detergents into the lipid bilayers is completely entropy-driven. The entropy change accompanying lipid disorder is equivalent in magnitude to the hydrophobic effect. Ala-d3 deuterated WALP-19 and GlycA(71-97) were incorporated into bilayers of 1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine at a peptide/lipid molar ratio of 1:100 and measured above the 1,2-dimyristoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine gel/liquid-crystal phase transition. Well-resolved 2H-NMR quadrupole splittings were observed for the two trans-membrane helices, revealing a rapid rotation of the CD3 methyl rotor superimposed on an additional rotation of the whole peptide around the bilayer normal. The presence of detergent fluidizes the membrane and produces magnetic alignment of bilayer domains but does not produce essential changes in the peptide conformation or dynamics.

Copyright 2010 Biophysical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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