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The use of model membrane techniques for the analysis of interactions, conformation and redox properties of menaquinones and other small molecules




Doucette, Kaitlin A., author
Crans, Debbie, advisor
Crick, Dean, committee member
Roess, Deborah, committee member
Menoni, Carmen, committee member

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This thesis explores the use of model membranes to solve complex problems in determining the placement, conformation, and electrochemical properties of hydrophobic compounds as they interact with a model membrane. Menaquinone, an electron transporter commonly found in Gram-positive and Gram-negative obligate anaerobes, consists of a naphthoquinone head group and isoprene tail of variable length and saturation. Chapter two shows the use of liposomal model membranes to solubilize menaquinone analogues of variable length and saturation for aqueous electrochemical studies characterizing half-wave potentials, reversibility, and diffusion coefficients to examine its redox properties in connection to its role as an electron transporter. This work shows a distinct odd-even effect with respect to the isoprene chain length of the compound and its electrochemical properties. The exploration of this project is continued in chapter three, in which the conformation and placement of menaquinone-2 is determined in the context of a phosphatidylcholine liposome using 1D and 2D 1H NMR. Finally, chapter four explores the use of a reverse micellar model membrane for determining the placement of glycine and short glycine peptides to explore its placement near a membrane with regards to its role as a neurotransmitter and to explore its potential role in antimicrobial peptides. The experiments contained herein show that model membranes are a useful tool for the study of hydrophobic compounds and molecules commonly found within a cellular membrane.


2021 Spring.
Includes bibliographical references.

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model membranes


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