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ERIC Number: EJ1074481
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Sep
Pages: 4
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9584
Osmotic Stressing, Membrane Leakage, and Fluorescence: An Introductory Biochemistry Demonstration
Seu, Kalani J.
Journal of Chemical Education, v92 n9 p1522-1525 Sep 2015
A fluorescence demonstration is described that incorporates several fundamental aspects of an introductory biochemistry course. A variation of a known leakage assay is utilized to prepare vesicles containing a quenched fluorophore. The vesicles are exposed to several osmotic environments ranging from isotonic to hypotonic. The degree of vesicle swelling, partial rupture or bursting, and subsequent release and dequenching of the encapsulated fluorophore can be observed. This demonstration introduces students to fluorescence, fluorescence quenching, lipid membrane dynamics, membrane permeability, and osmotic pressure. Students are also introduced to the lipid extrusion process and are able to observe the separation of compounds via size exclusion chromatography. This demonstration has the flexibility to be expanded to laboratory experiments that allow students to investigate a variety of membrane properties.
Division of Chemical Education, Inc and ACS Publications Division of the American Chemical Society. 1155 Sixteenth Street NW, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 800-227-5558; Tel: 202-872-4600; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A