Primitive membranes and energy conversion

Stability of bilayers formed by single chain amphiphile mixtures

  • Which amphiphile mixtures allow for the formation of stable bilayer membranes?
  • Under which environmental conditions (temperature, ionic strength of the medium [fresh water vs sea water] and pH) can the total prebiotic amphiphile composition be altered as to allow the accretion of the chain amphiphiles more likely to form stable structures? Often the environmental factors are neglected although they must have had a significant impact on the formation of primitive membranes
  • What advantages did the mixed amphiphile composition impart on the formation of bilayers in relation with environmental conditions, as well as with the encapsulation of primitive catalytic networks likely dominated by metal-ion catalysts?

Contact: Pierre-Alain Monnard

Stability of bilayers formed by single chain amphiphile mixtures

Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) have chromophoric properties which have prompted researchers to propose them as early pigments that would been involved in early energy uptake system for protocells.

  • Can PAHs form mixed membranous structures with single chain amphiphiles?
  • Can they act as pigments once inserted in the bilayers?

Contact: Pierre-Alain Monnard