Structural transformation in vesicles upon hydrolysis of phosphatidylethanolamine and phosphatidylcholine with phospholipase C

Wye Khay Fong, Antoni Sánchez-Ferrer, Michael Rappolt, Ben J. Boyd, Raffaele Mezzenga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


This study provides insights into dynamic nanostructural changes in phospholipid systems during hydrolysis with phospholipase C, the fate of the hydrolysis products, and the kinetics of lipolysis. The effect of lipid restructuring of the vesicle was investigated using small-angle X-ray scattering and cryogenic scanning electron microscopy. The rate and extent of phospholipid hydrolysis were quantified using nuclear magnetic resonance. Hydrolysis of two phospholipids, phosphatidylethanolamine (PE) and phosphatidylcholine (PC), results in the cleavage of the molecular headgroup, causing two strikingly different changes in lipid self-assembly. The diacylglycerol product of PC escapes the lipid bilayer, whereas the diacylglycerol product adopts a different configuration within the lipid bilayer of the PE vesicles. These results are then discussed concerning the change of the lipid configuration upon the lipid membrane and its potential implications in vivo, which is of significant importance for the detailed understanding of the fate of lipidic particles and the rational design of enzyme-responsive lipid-based drug delivery systems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14949-14958
Number of pages10
Issue number46
Publication statusPublished - 23 Oct 2019

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