Analytical Sciences

Abstract − Analytical Sciences, 14(1), 3 (1998).

Supported Bilayer Lipid Membranes as Ion and Molecular Probes
H. T. TIEN*, R. H. BARISH*, L.-Q. GU** and A. L. OTTOVA*, ***
*Membrane Biophysics Lab (Giltner Hall),Department of Physiology, Michigan State University,East Lansing, Michigan 48824, USA
**University of Western Australia, Department of Pharmacology, QueenElizabeth II Medical Centre,Nedlands, Perth, WA 6907, Australia
***Center for Interface Sciences, Department of Microelectronics,Slovak Technical University,Bratislava, Slovak Republic
In this paper we review the use of supported BLMs (bilayer lipid membranes)as sensors for the detection of ions and molecular species in aqueousmedia. The inspiration for this exciting research, without question, comesfrom thebiological world, where, for example, the lipid bilayer of the cellmembrane is the most important self-assembling system.Although the first report on self-assembled bilayer lipid membranes (BLMs)in vitro was published in 1962, interfacescience including surface and colloid science has been dealing with theseinterfacial self-assemblies of amphiphilicmolecules since Robert Hooke's time (1672). Here, we present results ofextensive study of physico chemical propertiesof two new membrane systems: metal and hydrogel supported bilayer lipidmembranes (BLMs for short, also known asplanar lipid bilayers). Several methods have been used to investigate theproperties of these metal supported s-BLMs andhydrogel supported salt-bridge sb-BLMs, including cyclic voltammetry.Examples of a number of potential applicationsof s-BLMs for the construction of a glucose sensor for biomedical use aswell as applications of agar supported BLMs fordetermining several toxins will be presented. (Keywords: Bilayer lipid membrane, planar lipid bilayer, biosensor,metal substrate, interface, agar, cyclic voltammetry)