Interfacing Molecular Dynamics and Macro-scale Simulations for Lipid Bilayer Vesicles

TitleInterfacing Molecular Dynamics and Macro-scale Simulations for Lipid Bilayer Vesicles
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2002
AuthorsAyton, G, Smondyrev, AM, Bardenhagen, SG, McMurtry, P, Voth, GA
JournalBiophys J
KeywordsAlgorithms Biophysical Phenomena Biophysics Carbon/chemistry Cholesterol/chemistry Computer Simulation Dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine/chemistry Lipid Bilayers/*chemistry Membranes/chemistry Models, Statistical Osmosis Protein Structure, Tertiary Time Factors

A continuum-level model for a giant unilamellar vesicle (GUV) is bridged to a corresponding atomistic model of a dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine (DMPC) bilayer at various cholesterol concentrations via computation of the bulk modulus. The bulk modulus and other microscopically determined parameters are passed to a continuum-level model operating in time- and length-scales orders of magnitude beyond that which is accessible by atomistic-level simulation. The continuum-level simulation method used is the material point method (MPM), and the particular variation used here takes advantage of the spherical nature of many GUVs. An osmotic pressure gradient due to a solvent concentration change is incorporated into the continuum-level simulation, resulting in osmotic swelling of the vesicle. The model is then extended to treat mixtures of DMPC and cholesterol, where small domains of different composition are considered.