Biomimetic Membranes: Molecular Structure and Stability Studies by Vibrational Sum Frequency Spectroscopy
Sammanfattning: In the research presented in this licentiate thesis the surface specific technique Vibrational Sum Frequency Spectroscopy, VSFS, combined with the Langmuir trough has been utilized to investigate Langmuir monolayers and Langmuir-Blodgett (LB) deposited mono- and bilayers of phospholipids. Their molecular structure, stability, and hydration were probed to gain additional understanding of important properties aiming at facilitating the use of such layers as model systems for biological membranes.VSFS was applied to in situ studies of the degradation of Langmuir monolayers of 1,2-diacyl-phosphocholines with identical C-18 chains having various degrees of unsaturation. The time-dependent change of the monolayer area at constant surface pressure as well as the sum frequency intensity of the vinyl-CH stretch at the C=C double bonds were measured to monitor the degradation. It was shown that a rapid degradation of the monolayers of unsaturated phospholipids occurred when exposed to the laboratory air compared to the fully saturated lipid, and that the degradation could be inhibited by purging the ambient air with nitrogen. The degradation was attributed to oxidation mediated by reactive species in the air.The molecular structure and order of Langmuir monolayers of 1,2-distearoyl-phosphocholine (18:0 PC) and their hydrating water were investigated at different surface pressures using VSFS. The spectroscopic data indicated a well ordered monolayer at all surface pressures with a more intense signal at higher pressures attributed to the subsequent increase of the number density and more ordered lipid molecules due to the tighter packing. Water molecules hydrating the headgroups or being in contact with the hydrophobic parts were observed and distinguished by their vibrational frequencies, and found to have different average orientations.Additionally, monolayers of 18:0 PC, its fully deuterated analogue, and 1,2-distearoyl-phosphoserine (18:0 PS) were Langmuir-Blodgett (LB) deposited on CaF2 substrates and VSFS was used to investigate the structure and order of the films as well as the hydrating water. The CH-region, water region, and lower wavenumber region containing phosphate, ester, carboxylic acid, and amine signals were probed to obtain a complete picture of the molecule. The data indicates that all deposited monolayers formed a well ordered and stable film and the average orientation of the aliphatic chains was determined using the antisymmetric methyl stretch.
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