MICROSCOPY Vol.44▶No.3 2009
â– Lectures

Visualization of membrane lipid molecules at the nanoscale

Akikazu Fujita and Toyoshi Fujimoto

Abstract: Ultrastructural distribution of membrane lipids has been difficult to observe by previous microscopic methods. By combining rapid freezing and freeze-fracture methods, we made it possible to capture membrane lipid distribution quantitatively at the nanoscale. The two-dimensional distribution of the molecules can be analyzed objectively by using several statistical methods. We applied this new technique to GM1 and phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate and acquired several new findings.

Key words: phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate, GM1, freeze-fracture, membrane lipids