Stability of Asymmetric Phospholipid Membranes

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Science  30 May 1969:
Vol. 164, Issue 3883, pp. 1075-1077
DOI: 10.1126/science.164.3883.1075


Bilayers (black films) composed of phosphatidylserine are unstable under conditions of asymmetric distribution of calcium or hydrogen ions with respect to the membrane. Addition of calcium ions to the solution (100 millimolar sodium chloride, pH 7.0) on one side only, produces lowering of the direct-current resistance and results in breaking of the membrane. However, with calcium ions on both sides the membranes are stable and show very high electrical resistance.

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