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Encapsulated droplet interface bilayers as a platform for high-throughput membrane studies

Baxani, D. K., Jamieson, W. D. ORCID:, Barrow, D. A. ORCID: and Castell, O. K. ORCID: 2022. Encapsulated droplet interface bilayers as a platform for high-throughput membrane studies. Soft Matter 18 , pp. 5089-5096. 10.1039/D1SM01111A

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Whilst it is highly desirable to produce artificial lipid bilayer arrays allowing for systematic high-content screening of membrane conditions, it remains a challenge due to the combined requirements of scaled membrane production, simple measurement access, and independent control over individual bilayer experimental conditions. Here, droplet bilayers encapsulated within a hydrogel shell are output individually into multi-well plates for simple, arrayed quantitative measurements. The afforded experimental throughput is used to conduct a 2D concentration screen characterising the synergistic pore-forming peptides Magainin2 and PGLa. Maximal enhanced activity is revealed at equimolar peptide concentrations via a membrane dye leakage assay, a finding consistent with models proposed from NMR data. The versatility of the platform is demonstrated by performing in situ electrophysiology, revealing low conductance pore activity (∼15 to 20 pA with 4.5 pA sub-states). In conclusion, this array platform addresses the aforementioned challenges and provides new and flexible opportunities for high-throughput membrane studies. Furthermore, the ability to engineer droplet networks within each construct paves the way for “lab-in-a-capsule” approaches accommodating multiple assays per construct and allowing for communicative reaction pathways.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Pharmacy
Publisher: Royal Society of Chemistry
ISSN: 1744-683X
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 6 July 2022
Date of Acceptance: 9 June 2022
Last Modified: 30 Nov 2022 08:15

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