A criterion to identify the equilibration time in lipid bilayer simulations

  • Rodolfo D. Porasso Instituto de Matemática Aplicada San Luis (IMASL) - Departamento de Física, Universidad Nacional de San Luis/CONICET
  • José J. López Cascales Universidad Politécnica de Cartagena, Grupo de Bioinformática y Macromoléculas (BioMac) Aulario II, Campus de Alfonso XIII, 30203 Cartagena, Murcia.
Keywords: Molecular dynamics, steady state, DPPC/DPPS, lipid bilayers, calcium chloride


With the aim of establishing a criterion for identifying when a lipid bilayer has reached steady state using the molecular dynamics simulation technique, lipid bilayers of different composition in their liquid crystalline phase were simulated in aqueous solution in presence of CaCl$_2$ as electrolyte, at different concentration levels. In this regard, we used two different lipid bilayer systems: one composed by 288 DPPC (DiPalmitoylPhosphatidylCholine) and another constituted by 288 DPPS (DiPalmitoylPhosphatidylSerine). In this sense, for both type of lipid bilayers, we have studied the temporal evolution of some lipids properties, such as the surface area per lipid, the deuterium order parameter, the lipid hydration and  the lipid-calcium coordination. From their analysis, it became evident how each property has a different time to achieve equilibrium. The following order was found, from faster property to slower property: coordination of ions $\approx$ deuterium order parameter $>$ area per lipid $\approx$ hydration. Consequently, when the hydration of lipids or the mean area per lipid are stable we can ensure that the lipid membrane has reached the steady state.

Received: 3 September 2012,  Accepted: 24 October 2012; Edited by: M. C. Barbosa; DOI:http://dx.doi.org/10.4279/PIP.040005

Cite as: R. D. Porasso, J. J. López Cascales, Papers in Physics 4, 040005 (2012)


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How to Cite
Porasso, R., & López Cascales, J. (2012). A criterion to identify the equilibration time in lipid bilayer simulations. Papers in Physics, 4, 040005. https://doi.org/10.4279/pip.040005
Received 2012-09-03
Accepted 2012-10-24
Published 2012-11-10