Active membranes studied by X-ray scattering
Institut für Röntgenphysik, Friedrich-Hund-Platz 1, 37073, Göttingen, Germany
2 Laboratoire Physico Chimie, Unité Mixte de Recherche 168 Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique/Institut Curie, 75231, Paris Cedex 05, France
Accepted: 5 July 2007
Published online: 22 August 2007
In view of recent theories of “active” membranes, we have studied multilamellar phospholipid membrane stacks with reconstituted transmembrane protein bacteriorhodopsin (BR) under different illumination conditions by X-ray scattering. The light-active protein is considered as an active constituent which drives the system out of equilibrium and is predicted to change the collective fluctuation properties of the membranes. Using X-ray reflectivity, X-ray non-specular (diffuse) scattering, and grazing incidence scattering, we find no detectable change in the scattering curves when changing the illumination condition. In particular the intermembrane spacing d remains constant, after eliminating hydration-related artifacts by design of a suitable sample environment. The absence of any observable non-equilibrium effects in the experimental window is discussed in view of the relevant parameters and recent theories.
PACS: 87.64.Bx Electron, neutron and X-ray diffraction and scattering – / 87.15.Kg Molecular interactions; membrane-protein interactions – / 87.15.Ya Fluctuations –
© EDP Sciences, Società Italiana di Fisica and Springer-Verlag, 2007