Applied Magnetic Resonance

, Volume 49, Issue 12, pp 1369–1383 | Cite as

Low-Temperature Dynamical Transition in Lipid Bilayers Detected by Spin-Label ESE Spectroscopy

  • Elena A. Golysheva
  • Marta De Zotti
  • Claudio Toniolo
  • Fernando Formaggio
  • Sergei A. DzubaEmail author
Original Paper


Data on neutron scattering in biological systems show low-temperature dynamical transition between 170 and 230 K manifesting itself as a drastic increase of the atomic mean-squared displacement, 〈x2〉, detected for hydrogen atoms in the nano- to picosecond time scale. For spin-labeled systems, electron spin echo (ESE) spectroscopy—a pulsed version of electron paramagnetic resonance—is also capable of detection of dynamical transition. A two-pulse ESE decay in frozen matrixes is induced by spin relaxation arising from stochastic molecular librations, and allows to obtain the 〈α2τc parameter, where 〈α2〉 is a mean-squared angular amplitude of the motion and τc is the correlation time lying in the sub- and nanosecond time ranges. In this work, the ESE technique was applied to spin-labeled amphiphilic molecules of three different kinds embedded in bilayers of fully saturated 1,2-dipalmitoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DPPC) and mono-unsaturated 1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (POPC) lipids. Two-pulse ESE data revealed the appearance of stochastic librations above 130 K, with the parameter 〈α2τc obeying the Arrhenius type of temperature dependence and increasing remarkably above 170–180 K. A comparison with a dry sample suggests that onset of motions is not related with lipid internal motions. Three-pulse ESE experiments (resulting in stimulated echos) in DPPC bilayers showed the appearance of slow molecular rotations above 170–180 K. For D2O-hydrated bilayers, ESE envelope modulation experiments indicate that isotropic water molecular motions in the nearest hydration shell of the bilayer appear with a rate of ~ 105 s−1 in the narrow temperature range between 175 and 179 K. The similarity of the experimental data found for three different spin-labeled compounds suggests a cooperative character for the ESE-detected molecular motions. The data were interpreted within a model suggesting that dynamical transition is related with overcoming barriers, of 10–20 kJ/mol height, existing in the system for the molecular reorientations.



This work was supported by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research, Project # 18-43-540004.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Chemical Kinetics and CombustionRussian Academy of SciencesNovosibirskRussian Federation
  2. 2.Department of PhysicsNovosibirsk State UniversityNovosibirskRussian Federation
  3. 3.Department of Chemical SciencesUniversity of PadovaPaduaItaly
  4. 4.Padova Unit, Institute of Biomolecular ChemistryCNRPaduaItaly

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