Supramolecular assemblies of vesicles composed of natural lipids embedded in a matrix of polydiacetylene are shown to undergo blue-to-red color changes related to specific interactions between the lipids or recognition elements and biomolecules. The colorimetric transitions observed in the vesicles are due to structural modifications within the conjugated PDA polymer backbone. This colorimetric assay could serve as a membrane-mimicking environment for detection of interfacial processes, such as peptide-membrane interactions, antibody-antigen binding, enzymatic catalysis, and detection of physiological ions. The lipid/PDA mixed vesicles are robust and can be readily applied to diagnosis of physiological molecules and rapid screening of biological and chemical libraries.
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Halevy, R., Kolusheva, S., Hancock, R.E.W. et al. Colorimetric Biosensor Vesicles for Biotechnological Applications. MRS Online Proceedings Library 724, N7.23 (2002). https://doi.org/10.1557/PROC-724-N7.23