Composition Dependence of Water Permeation Across Multicomponent Gel-Phase Bilayers

Remco Hartkamp*, Timothy C. Moore, Christopher R. Iacovella, Michael A. Thompson, Pallav A. Bulsara, David J. Moore, Clare McCabe

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)
2 Downloads (Pure)


The permeability of multicomponent phospholipid bilayers in the gel phase is investigated via molecular dynamics simulation. The physical role of the different molecules is probed by comparing multiple mixed-component bilayers containing distearylphosphatidylcholine (DSPC) with varying amounts of either the emollient isostearyl isostearate or long-chain alcohol (dodecanol, octadecanol, or tetracosanol) molecules. Permeability is found to depend on both the tail packing density and hydrogen bonding between lipid headgroups and water. Whereas the addition of emollient or alcohol molecules to a gel-phase DSPC bilayer can increase the tail packing density, it also disturbed the hydrogen-bonding network, which in turn can increase interfacial water dynamics. These phenomena have opposing effects on bilayer permeability, which is found to depend on the balance between enhanced tail packing and decreased hydrogen bonding.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3113-3123
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry B
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 29 Mar 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry


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