Formation of Giant Protein Vesicles by a Lipid Cosolvent Method

Jesper S. Hansen, Ardcharaporn Vararattanavech, Thomas Vissing, Jaume Torres, Jenny Emnéus, Claus Helix Nielsen

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


This paper describes a method to create giant protein vesicles (GPVs) of ≥10 μm by solvent‐driven fusion of large vesicles (0.1–0.2 μm) with reconstituted membrane proteins. We found that formation of GPVs proceeded from rotational mixing of protein‐reconstituted large unilamellar vesicles (LUVs) with a lipid‐containing solvent phase. We made GPVs by using n‐decane and squalene as solvents, and applied generalized polarization (GP) imaging to monitor the polarity around the protein transmembrane region of aquaporins labeled with the polarity‐sensitive probe Badan. Specifically, we created GPVs of spinach SoPIP2;1 and E. coli AqpZ aquaporins. Our findings show that hydrophobic interactions within the bilayer of formed GPVs are influenced not only by the solvent partitioning propensity, but also by lipid composition and membrane protein isoform.
Original languageEnglish
Issue number18
Pages (from-to)2856-2862
Publication statusPublished - 2011


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