A vesicle microrheometer for high-throughput viscosity measurements of lipid and polymer membranes

Hammad A. Faizi, Rumiana Dimova, Petia M. Vlahovska*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Viscosity is a key property of cell membranes that controls mobility of embedded proteins and membrane remodeling. Measuring it is challenging because existing approaches involve complex experimental designs and/or models, and the applicability of some methods is limited to specific systems and membrane compositions. As a result there is scarcity of systematic data, and the reported values for membrane viscosity vary by orders of magnitude for the same system. Here, we show how viscosity of membranes can be easily obtained from the transient deformation of giant unilamellar vesicles. The approach enables a noninvasive, probe-independent, and high-throughput measurement of the viscosity of membranes made of lipids or polymers with a wide range of compositions and phase state. Using this novel method, we have collected a significant amount of data that provides insights into the relation between membrane viscosity, composition, and structure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)910-918
Number of pages9
JournalBiophysical Journal
Volume121
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 15 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics

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