Quenching of cascade reaction between triplet and photochrome probes with nitroxide radicals. A novel labeling method in study of membranes and surface systems. Academic Article uri icon


  • We proposed a new method for the study of molecular dynamics and fluidity of the living and model biomembranes and surface systems. The method is based on the measurements of the sensitized photoisomerization kinetics of a photochrome probe. The cascade triplet cis-trans photoisomerization of the excited stilbene derivative sensitized with the excited triplet Erythrosin B has been studied in a model liposome membrane. The photoisomerization reaction is depressed with nitroxide radicals quenching the excited triplet state of the sensitizer. The enhanced fluorescence polarization of the stilbene probe incorporated into liposome membranes indicates that the stilbene molecules are squeezed in a relatively viscous media of the phospholipids. Calibration of the "triple" cascade system is based on a previously proposed method that allows the measurement of the product of the quenching rate constant and the sensitizer's triplet lifetime, as well as the quantitative detection of the nitroxide radicals in the vicinity of the membrane surface. The experiment was conducted using the constant-illumination fluorescence technique. Sensitivity of the method using a standard commercial spectrofluorimeter is about 10(-12) mol of fluorescence molecules per sample and can be improved using an advanced fluorescence technique. The minimal local concentration of nitroxide radicals or any other quenchers being detected is about 10(-5) M. This method enables the investigation of any chemical and biological surface processes of microscopic scale when the minimal volume is about 10(-3) microL or less.

publication date

  • January 1, 2000