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Increased Binding of Calcium Ions at Positively Curved Phospholipid Membranes

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)518-523
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 19 Jan 2017
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


Calcium ion is the ubiquitous messenger in cells and plays a key role in neuronal signaling and fusion of synaptic vesicles. These vesicles are typically ∼20-50 nm in diameter, and thus their interaction with calcium ions cannot be modeled faithfully with a conventional flat membrane bilayer setup. Within our newly developed molecular dynamics simulations setup, we characterize here interactions of the calcium ion with curved membrane interfaces with atomistic detail. The present molecular dynamics simulations together with time-dependent fluorescence shift experiments suggest that the mode and strength of interaction of calcium ion with a phospholipid bilayer depends on its curvature. Potential of mean force calculations demonstrate that the binding of calcium ion to the positively curved side of the bilayer is significantly stronger compared with that to a flat membrane.

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Field of science, Statistics Finland