Jump to main content
Jump to site search
Access to RSC content Close the message box

Continue to access RSC content when you are not at your institution. Follow our step-by-step guide.

Issue 12, 2008
Previous Article Next Article

Volume transition in composite poly(NIPAM)–giant unilamellar vesicles

Author affiliations


We have recently reported on the formation of composite gel vesicles prepared by the photopolymerization and crosslinking of poly(N-isopropyl-acrylamide) [poly(NIPAM)] inside phospholipid giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs). Here we present a detailed study of the thermo-responsive behaviour of such composite vesicles. Giant vesicles filled with a poly(NIPAM) gel (gel–GUVs) exhibit a global volume phase transition, revealing a strong interaction between the gel and the phospholipid bilayer. Fluorescence studies show that the lipid membrane is not destroyed during the volume transition. The behaviour of giant vesicles filled with a poly(NIPAM) solution (sol–GUVs) depends on the volume fraction ΦNIPAM of encapsulated NIPAM, the precursor monomer for poly(NIPAM). For ΦNIPAM ≤ 0.06, we observe a frustrated demixing of the poly(NIPAM) chains in the internal medium; for ΦNIPAM ≥ 0.07, sol–GUVs behave like homogeneous spheres and undergo a global volume phase transition similar to the one observed in gel–GUVs. For high volume fractions (ΦNIPAM = 0.09) achieved by osmotic deflation of low volume fraction (ΦNIPAM = 0.03) sol–GUVs, we observe a full demixing of the internal medium into two well-separated phases.

Graphical abstract: Volume transition in composite poly(NIPAM)–giant unilamellar vesicles

Back to tab navigation

Article information

20 May 2008
31 Jul 2008
First published
17 Sep 2008

Soft Matter, 2008,4, 2486-2491
Article type

Volume transition in composite poly(NIPAM)–giant unilamellar vesicles

C. C. Campillo, A. P. Schröder, C. M. Marques and B. Pépin-Donat, Soft Matter, 2008, 4, 2486
DOI: 10.1039/B808472F

Social activity

Search articles by author