Biomimetic membranes

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  • Gecko’s feet, lotus leaves, blue butterfly wings, spider’s silk, fireflies, mother-of-pearl…. All these wonders of nature, which traditionally filled the pages of natural history magazines have attracted the attention of materials scientists over the past decades. They have often been presented as models to design and engineer optimal structures. And this renewed interest in natural systems has undoubtedly brought about innovating strategies in chemistry, materials science and nanotechnology....

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  • Most of the biochemical and biophysical processes of proteins take place at membranes, and are thus under the influence of strong local electric fields, which are likely to affect the structure as well as the reaction mecha-nism and dynamics.

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  • Depth of bilayer penetration and effects on lipid mobility conferred by themembrane-active peptidesmagainin, melit-tin, and a hydrophobic helical sequence KKA(LA)7KK (denoted KAL), were investigated by colorimetric and time-resolved fluorescence techniques in biomimetic phos-pholipid/poly(diacetylene)vesicles. The experiments dem-onstrated that the extent of bilayer permeation and peptide localization within the membrane was dependent upon the bilayer composition, and that distinct dynamic modifica-tions were induced by each peptide within the head-group environment of the phospholipids....

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  • The phospholipase D (PLD) fromStreptomyces chromo-fuscusbelongs to the superfamily of PLDs. All the enzymes included in this superfamily are able to catalyze both hydrolysis and transphosphatidylation activities. However, S. chromofuscusPLD is calcium dependent and is often described as an enzyme with weak transphosphatidylation activity. S. chromofuscus PLD-catalyzed hydrolysis of phospholipids in aqueous medium leads to the formation of phosphatidic acid.

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