How Do Ethanolamine Plasmalogens Contribute to Order and Structure of Neurological Membranes?

Ana West, Valeria Zoni, Walter E. Teague, Alison N. Leonard, Stefano Vanni, Klaus Gawrisch, Stephanie Tristram-Nagle, Jonathan N. Sachs, Jeffery B. Klauda

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21 Scopus citations


Ethanolamine plasmalogen (EtnPLA) is a conical-shaped ether lipid and an essential component of neurological membranes. Low stability against oxidation limits its study in experiments. The concentration of EtnPLA in the bilayer varies depending on cell type and disease progression. Here we report on mixed bilayers of 1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (POPC) and 1-(1Z-octadecenyl)-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoethanolamine (C18(Plasm)-18:1PE, PLAPE), an EtnPLA lipid subtype, at mole ratios of 2:1, 1:1, and 1:2. We present X-ray diffuse scattering (XDS) form factors F(qz) from oriented stacks of bilayers, related electron-density profiles, and hydrocarbon chain NMR order parameters. To aid future research on EtnPLA lipids and associated proteins, we have also extended the CHARMM36 all-atom force field to include the PLAPE lipid. The ability of the new force-field parameters to reproduce both X-ray and NMR structural properties of the mixed bilayer is remarkable. Our results indicate a thickening of the bilayer upon incorporation of increasing amounts of PLAPE into mixed bilayers, a reduction of lateral area per molecule, and an increase in lipid tail-ordering. The lateral compressibility modulus (KA) calculated from simulations yielded values for PLAPE similar to POPC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)828-839
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry B
Issue number5
StatePublished - Feb 6 2020

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Copyright © 2020 American Chemical Society.


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