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Chemically Triggered Ejection of Membrane Tubules Controlled by Intermonolayer Friction

Abstract : We report a chemically driven membrane shape instability that triggers the ejection of a tubule growing exponentially toward a chemical source. The instability is initiated by a dilation of the exposed monolayer, which is coupled to the membrane spontaneous curvature and slowed down by intermonolayer friction. Our experiments are performed by local delivery of a basic pH solution to a giant vesicle. Quantitative fits of the data give an intermonolayer friction coefficient b approximately 2x10;{9} J s/m;{4}. The exponential growth of the tubule may be explained by a Marangoni stress yielding a pulling force proportional to its length.
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J.-B. Fournier, Nada Khalifat, N. Puff, M. Angelova. Chemically Triggered Ejection of Membrane Tubules Controlled by Intermonolayer Friction. Physical Review Letters, American Physical Society, 2009, 102 (1), pp.018102. ⟨10.1103/PhysRevLett.102.018102⟩. ⟨hal-02443688⟩

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