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Journal Article

Rapid Encapsulation of Reconstituted Cytoskeleton inside Giant Unilamellar Vesicles


Schwille,  Petra
Schwille, Petra / Cellular and Molecular Biophysics, Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Bashirzadeh, Y., Wubshet, N., Litschel, T., Schwille, P., & Liu, A. P. (2021). Rapid Encapsulation of Reconstituted Cytoskeleton inside Giant Unilamellar Vesicles. Journal of Visualized Experiments, (177): e63332. doi:10.3791/63332.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0009-A227-4
Giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs) are frequently used as models of biological membranes and thus are a great tool to study membrane-related cellular processes in vitro. In recent years, encapsulation within GUVs has proven to be a helpful approach for reconstitution experiments in cell biology and related fields. It better mimics confinement conditions inside living cells, as opposed to conventional biochemical reconstitution. Methods for encapsulation inside GUVs are often not easy to implement, and success rates can differ significantly from lab to lab. One technique that has proven to be successful for encapsulating more complex protein systems is called continuous droplet interface crossing encapsulation (cDICE). Here, a cDICE-based method is presented for rapidly encapsulating cytoskeletal proteins in GUVs with high encapsulation efficiency. In this method, first, lipid-monolayer droplets are generated by emulsifying a protein solution of interest in a lipid/oil mixture. After being added into a rotating 3D-printed chamber, these lipid-monolayered droplets then pass through a second lipid monolayer at a water/oil interface inside the chamber to form GUVs that contain the protein system. This method simplifies the overall procedure of encapsulation within GUVs and speeds up the process, and thus allows us to confine and observe the dynamic evolution of network assembly inside lipid bilayer vesicles. This platform is handy for studying the mechanics of cytoskeleton-membrane interactions in confinement.