Modification of lipid membrane compressibility induced by an electric field

KR Prathyusha and I Pagonabarraga and PBS Kumar, PHYSICAL REVIEW E, 102, 062413 (2020).

DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevE.102.062413

Changes in membrane deformation and compressibility, induced by an external electric field, are investigated using coarse-grained MARTINI force field simulations in a salt-free environment. We observe changes in the area of the membrane above a critical electric field. Below this value, the membrane compressibility modulus is found to decrease monotonically. For higher electric fields, the membrane projected area remains constant while the net interfacial area increases, with the corresponding compressibility moduli, show the opposite behavior. We find that the mechanical parameters, surface tension and bending modulus, of a freely floating membrane in the absence of explicit ions, are unaffected by the presence of the electric field. We believe these results have a bearing on our understanding of the electroformation of uncharged lipids in a salt-free environment.

Return to Publications page