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Membranes 2011, 1(4), 265-274;

Formation of Oligovesicular Vesicles by Micromanipulation

Department of Chemistry and Material Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Shinshu University, 4-17-1 Wakasato, Nagano 380-8553, Japan
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 7 September 2011 / Revised: 20 September 2011 / Accepted: 21 September 2011 / Published: 26 September 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Membrane Morphogenesis)
PDF [3107 KB, uploaded 26 September 2011]


Cell-sized lipid bilayer membrane vesicles (giant vesicles, GVs) or semi-vesicles were formed from egg yolk phosphatidylcholine on a platinum electrode under applied electric voltage by electroformation. Micromanipulation of the semi-vesicle by first pressing its membrane with a glass microneedle and then withdrawing the needle left a GV in the interior of the vesicle. During the process, an aqueous solution of Ficoll that filled the needle was introduced into the newly formed inner vesicle and remained encapsulated. Approximately 50% of attempted micromanipulation resulted in the formation of an inner daughter vesicle, “microvesiculation”. By repeating the microvesiculation process, multiple inner GVs could be formed in a single parent semi-vesicle. A semi-vesicle with inner GVs could be detached from the electrode by scraping with a microneedle, yielding an oligovesicular vesicle (OVV) with desired inner aqueous contents. Microvesiculation of a GV held on the tip of a glass micropipette was also possible, and this also produced an OVV. Breaking the membrane of the parent semi-vesicle by micromanipulation with a glass needle after microvesiculation, released the inner GVs. This protocol may be used for controlled formation of GVs with desired contents. View Full-Text
Keywords: electroformation; electroswelling; giant vesicles; giant liposomes; oligovesicular vesicles; micromanipulation; microvesiculation electroformation; electroswelling; giant vesicles; giant liposomes; oligovesicular vesicles; micromanipulation; microvesiculation

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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.; Ohmiya, T.; Yamazaki, T. Formation of Oligovesicular Vesicles by Micromanipulation. Membranes 2011, 1, 265-274.

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