Adhesion of fluid vesicles at chemically structured substrates
Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces, Science Park Golm, D-14424, Potsdam, Germany
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Accepted: 16 October 2007
Published online: 29 November 2007
The adhesion of fluid vesicles at chemically structured substrates is studied theoretically via Monte Carlo simulations. The substrate surface is planar and repels the vesicle membrane apart from a single surface domain γ , which strongly attracts this membrane. If the vesicle is larger than the attractive γ domain, the spreading of the vesicle onto the substrate is restricted by the size of this surface domain. Once the contact line of the adhering vesicle has reached the boundaries of the γ domain, further deflation of the vesicle leads to a regime of low membrane tension with pronounced shape fluctuations, which are now governed by the bending rigidity. For a circular γ domain and a small bending rigidity, the membrane oscillates strongly around an average spherical cap shape. If such a vesicle is deflated, the contact area increases or decreases with increasing osmotic pressure, depending on the relative size of the vesicle and the circular γ domain. The lateral localization of the vesicle's center of mass by such a domain is optimal for a certain domain radius, which is found to be rather independent of adhesion strength and bending rigidity. For vesicles adhering to stripe-shaped surface domains, the width of the contact area perpendicular to the stripe varies nonmonotonically with the adhesion strength.
PACS: 87.16.Dg Membranes, bilayers, and vesicles – / 68.15.+e Liquid thin films – / 87.16.Ac Theory and modeling; computer simulation –
© EDP Sciences, Società Italiana di Fisica and Springer-Verlag, 2007