Examination of Theoretical Free Energy in Lipid Raft Systems

Cameron Walker, GSSM
Louis Tedeschi

Abstract

A Lipid Raft is a collection of saturated phospholipids and cholesterol surrounded by unsaturated phospholipids. Lipid Rafts contain large quantities of certain proteins and sphingomyelin, a molecule common in nerve and brain cells. Lipid Rafts can be used to further research into many diseases such as Alzheimer, while also assisting in drug development and delivery for these diseases. The miscibility gap outlines the area of concentrations where specific lipids can form a Lipid Raft. Since there are no methods for physically testing for a Lipid Raft, and computer simulations for these systems can take months, our research attempted to create mathematical models for predicting a miscibility gap. Using experimental concentration values and the Helmholtz free energy model, we created a tri-plots that outlined the miscibility gap. The data collected can help to further research into Lipid Rafts and the simulations used to model them.

 
Apr 14th, 10:15 AM

Examination of Theoretical Free Energy in Lipid Raft Systems

Neville 206

A Lipid Raft is a collection of saturated phospholipids and cholesterol surrounded by unsaturated phospholipids. Lipid Rafts contain large quantities of certain proteins and sphingomyelin, a molecule common in nerve and brain cells. Lipid Rafts can be used to further research into many diseases such as Alzheimer, while also assisting in drug development and delivery for these diseases. The miscibility gap outlines the area of concentrations where specific lipids can form a Lipid Raft. Since there are no methods for physically testing for a Lipid Raft, and computer simulations for these systems can take months, our research attempted to create mathematical models for predicting a miscibility gap. Using experimental concentration values and the Helmholtz free energy model, we created a tri-plots that outlined the miscibility gap. The data collected can help to further research into Lipid Rafts and the simulations used to model them.