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Phase transitions and molecular detection in a lipid membrane derivatized silica colloid


University of California Berkeley, US

Keywords: phase transition, molecular detection, lipid membrane, silica colloid

Abstract:
Colloidal phase transitions of silica beads, which have been coated with fluid lipid bilayer membranes, are examined. The interaction energy between beads is adjusted to position the colloid near a phase transition. In this state, the system is sensitized to subtle events on the membrane surface. We study molecular binding to membrane targets with the system, which proves to be a sensitive detector without need for labels or power. Analysis of bead pair distribution functions is employed to extract quantitative interaction energies for various membrane interactions.

NSTI Nanotech 2003 Conference Technical Program Abstract

 
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