Mixed lecithin-bile salt micelles are known to have a cylindrical or worm-like structure. We investigated their shape, length, flexibility and cross-sectional structure using small-angle neutron scattering (SANS). A broad range of sample compositions was studied varying both the total amphiphile concentration and the molar ratio of bile salt (sodium taurochenodeoxycholate, NaTCDC) to lecithin (egg yolk phosphatidylcholine, EYL). The length of the micelles was quantitatively linked to the micellar composition by introducing a simple model. The model takes into account the partitioning of lecithin and bile salt between the bulk, cylindrical parts and the end caps of the micelles. The model also sheds light on the organization of the micelles, both in their cylindrical regions and end caps.
Subject classification (UKÄ)
- Physical Chemistry