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Membranes 2011, 1(3), 184-194;

Electroformation of Giant Vesicles on a Polymer Mesh

Department of Chemistry and Material Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Shinshu University, Wakasato, Nagano 380-8553, Japan
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 May 2011 / Revised: 27 June 2011 / Accepted: 13 July 2011 / Published: 15 July 2011
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Electroformation of cell-sized lipid membrane vesicles (giant vesicles, GVs) from egg yolk phosphatidylcholine under applied electric voltage was examined on a substrate of a polymer mesh placed between two planar indium tin oxide coated glass electrodes. Under appropriate conditions, GVs were formed in good yield on meshes of various polymer materials, namely, hydrophobic poly(propylene), poly(ethylene terephthalate), a carbon fiber/nylon composite, and relatively hydrophilic nylon. Arranging threads in a mesh structure with appropriate openings improved GV formation compared to simply increasing the number of threads. For optimal electroformation of GVs, the size and shape of a mesh opening were crucial. With a too large opening, GV formation deteriorated. When the sides of an opening were partially missing, GV formation did not occur efficiently. With an adequate opening, a deposited lipid solution could fill the opening, and a relatively uniform lipid deposit formed on the surface of threads after evaporation of the solvent. This could supply a sufficient amount of lipids to the opening and also prevent a lipid deposit from becoming too thick for electroformation. As a result, good GV formation was often observed in openings filled with swelled lipid. View Full-Text
Keywords: electroformation; electroswelling; giant vesicles; giant liposomes; lipid membrane; polymer mesh; immobilized vesicles electroformation; electroswelling; giant vesicles; giant liposomes; lipid membrane; polymer mesh; immobilized vesicles

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Okumura, Y.; Sugiyama, T. Electroformation of Giant Vesicles on a Polymer Mesh. Membranes 2011, 1, 184-194.

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