To investigate the effect of fluorescent probe on the properties of membranes, we studied model membranes composed of 1,2- dipalmitoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DPPC) and 1-palmitoyl 2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (POPC) in the presence and absence of fluorescent probe. The morphology of giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs) has been observed as a function of temperature and composition by fluorescence microscopy using NBD-DOPE or C6-NBD-PC as the probe. The phase behavior of model membranes containing no fluorescent probe was investigated by 2H-NMR spectroscopy. We found that the bright phase observed on GUVs was the fluid phase enriched in POPC and the dark phase was the gel phase enriched in DPPC. NBD-DOPE and C6-NBD-PC preferentially participated in the fluid-phase domains when GUVs were in the gel + fluid phase coexistence. Inclusion of both fluorescent probes (1 mol%) lowered the transition temperature of POPC/DPPC membranes. In addition, C6-NBD-PC exhibited a stronger effect than NBD-DOPE, which was considered to be associated with the structures of fluorescent molecules.
- 2H NMR
- fluorescence microscopy