Mixing behavior of a poly (ethylene glycol) -grafted phospholipid in monolayers at the air/water interface
Tsoukanova, V.; Salesse, C.
Langmuir 24(22): 13019-13029
ISSN/ISBN: 0743-7463 PMID: 18942801 DOI: 10.1021/la801868j
Mixed phospholipid monolayers hosting a poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG)-grafted distearoylphosphatidylethanolamine with a PEG molecular weight of 5000 (DSPE-PEG5000) spread at the air/water interface were used as model systems to study the effect of PEG-phospholipids on the lateral structure of PEG-grafted membrane-mimetic surfaces. DSPE-PEG5000 has been found to mix readily with distearoylphosphoethanolamine-succinyl (DSPE-succynil), a phospholipid whose structure resembles closely that of the phospholipid part of the DSPE-PEG5000 molecule. However, properties of mixed monolayers such as morphology and stability varied significantly with DSPE-PEG5000 content. In particular, our surface pressure, epifluorescence microscopy (EFM), and Brewster angle microscopy (BAM) studies have shown that mixtures containing 1-9 mol % of DSPE-PEG5000 form stable condensed monolayers with no sign of microscopic phase separation at surface pressures above approximately 25 mN/m. Yet, at 1 mol % of DSPE-PEG5000 in mixed monolayers, the two components have been found to behave nearly immiscibly at surface pressures below approximately 25 mN/m. For monolayers containing 18-75 mol % of DSPE-PEG5000, a high-pressure transition has been observed in the low-compressibility region of their isotherms, which has been identified on the basis of continuous BAM imaging of monolayer morphology, as reminiscent of the collapse nucleation in a pure DSPE-PEG5000 monolayer. Thus, the comparative analysis of our surface pressure, EFM, and BAM data has revealed that there exists a rather narrow range of mixture compositions with DSPE-PEG5000 content between 3 and 9 mol %, where somewhat homogeneous distribution of DSPE-PEG5000 molecules and high pressure stability can be achieved. This finding can be useful to "navigating" through possible mixture compositions while developing guidelines to the rational design of membrane-mimetic surfaces with highly controlled bio-nonfouling properties.