Molecular Theory for Amphiphile Packing and Elastic Properties of Monolayers and Bilayers
In a number of recent papers we have presented and developed a statistical thermodynamic theory for amphiphile chain packing in micellar aggregates and membrane bilayers. The central quantity in the theory is the (singlet) probability distribution function (pdf) of chain conformations, with the aid of which one can calculate conformational properties (e.g. bond order parameters and chain segment spatial distributions), as well as relevant thermodynamic functions such as the average internal (gauche/trans) energy, conformational entropy and free energy. The conformational pdf accounts explicitly for the packing constraints imposed on a given chain by (excluded volume interactions with) its neighbors. These constraints, and consequently the pdf depend on the geometrical characteristics of the microenvironment in which the chains are packed; namely, the curvature of the hydrocarbon-water interface of the micelle, membrane or monolayer and the surface density of polar heads.
KeywordsEntropy Surfactant Hydrocarbon Macromolecule Tral
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