Document Type


Date of Original Version



Chemical Engineering


The chain length dependence of the interaction of PFOA, a persistent environmental contaminant, with dimyristoyl- (DMPC), dipalmitoyl- (DPPC) and distearoylphosphatidylcholine (DSPC) was investigated using steady-state fluorescence anisotropy spectroscopy, differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and dynamic light scattering (DLS). PFOA caused a linear depression of the main phase transition temperature Tm while increasing the width of the phase transition of all three phosphatidylcholines. Although PFOA's effect on Tm and the transition width decreased in the order DMPC > DPPC > DSPC, its relative effect on the phase behavior was largely independent of the phosphatidylcholine. PFOA caused swelling of DMPC but not DPPC and DSPC liposomes at 37 °C in the DLS experiments, which suggests that PFOA partitions more readily into bilayers in the fluid phase. These findings suggest that PFOA's effect on the phase behavior of phosphatidylcholines depends on the cooperativity and state (i.e., gel versus liquid phase) of the membrane. DLS experiments are also consistent with partial liposome solubilization at PFOA/lipid molar ratios > 1, which suggests the formation of mixed PFOA–lipid micelles.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.