CHAPTER 10: Deuterium NMR of Mixed Lipid Membranes
Published:24 Feb 2014
S. S. W. Leung and J. Thewalt, in Advances in Biological Solid-State NMR: Proteins and Membrane-Active Peptides, ed. F. Separovic and A. Naito, The Royal Society of Chemistry, 2014, pp. 180-199.
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We illustrate the usefulness of 2H NMR spectroscopy applied to the study of lipid membranes by examining binary and ternary mixtures. Studying pair-wise interactions between lipids is an important first step for understanding more complex interactions between multiple components in biological systems. Analysis of the plateau order parameter for a number of binary mixtures reveals that well mixed lipids usually do not display equivalent chain order parameters. The lipid backbone appears to play a bigger role than chain length or unsaturation in dictating chain order differences in binary membranes. Complex phase behaviour such as liquid ordered–liquid disordered phase coexistence has been observed in ternary mixtures using 2H NMR and other techniques. Recent work reconciling the differences between results from 2H NMR spectroscopy and fluorescence microscopy is reviewed. Finally, we discuss some of the parallels between membranes found in the epidermal barrier and model “skin barrier membranes” as revealed by 2H NMR investigations.