A combined experimental and theoretical study was performed on a series of mixtures of dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine (DPPC) and synthetic peptides to investigate their thermotropic behavior and lateral organization. The experimental study was based on differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and phosphorous nuclear magnetic resonance (P-31-NMR) techniques; the theoretical study was based on calculations on a microscopic molecular interaction model, where the lipid-peptide interaction is built on the hydrophobic matching principle. The chosen peptides, WALP and KALP, consist of a hydrophobic stretch, of variable length, of alternating leucine and alanine residues, flanked on both ends with tryptophan and lysine residues, respectively. By systematically varying the peptide hydrophobic length it was thus possible to explore different matching conditions between the peptide's hydrophobic length and the lipid bilayer hydrophobic thickness, and to investigate the potential role of flanking residues. The results show that both the WALP and the KALP peptides tend to favor the liquid-crystal line (or fluid) phase of the system; i.e., they tend to depress the main-transition temperature, T-m, of pure DPPC. However, the detailed effects of both peptides on the lateral phase behavior of the lipid-peptide system are dependent on the peptide length and the type of flanking residues. The results suggest that below T-m, the shortest among the WALP and KALP peptides induce gel-fluid phase separation in the system within an extensive temperature-composition region. The longer the hydrophobic length of the peptides is, the more narrow this region appears to become.
|Publication status||Published - 2002|