Nuclear magnetic resonance study of doxorubicin binding to cardiolipin containing magnetically oriented phospholipid bilayers

Biochim Biophys Acta. 2001 Oct 1;1514(2):206-16. doi: 10.1016/s0005-2736(01)00371-6.


Doxorubicin (DOX) is a potent anthracycline cancer drug whose interaction with anionic membrane phospholipids, such as cardiolipin (CL), is thought to contribute to its cytotoxicity as well as induce cardiotoxic side effects. We have studied the interaction of DOX with a CL containing model membrane system using high resolution, oriented sample (31)P and (2)H NMR. The model membrane system is composed of a bilayer forming phospholipid and a detergent that breaks the extended bilayers into disc-shaped micelles (bicelles) that can orient in a magnetic field. The effects of DOX on the phospholipid bilayer were monitored using samples containing dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine (DMPC), selectively deuterated in either headgroup or acyl chain positions, and measuring the changes in (2)H quadrupolar splittings as DOX was added. Changes in quadrupolar splittings upon DOX addition provide evidence for interaction with both surface and buried sites within the membrane bilayer.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Cardiolipins / chemistry
  • Cardiolipins / metabolism*
  • Dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine / chemistry
  • Doxorubicin / chemistry
  • Doxorubicin / metabolism*
  • Lipid Bilayers / chemistry
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy
  • Magnetics
  • Molecular Structure
  • Phospholipids / chemistry
  • Titrimetry


  • Cardiolipins
  • Lipid Bilayers
  • Phospholipids
  • Doxorubicin
  • Dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine