Resonantly Enhanced Nonlinear Optical Probes of Oxidized Multiwalled Carbon Nanotubes at Supported Lipid Bilayers

J Phys Chem B. 2017 Feb 16;121(6):1321-1329. doi: 10.1021/acs.jpcb.6b10141. Epub 2017 Feb 8.


With production of carbon nanotubes surpassing billions of tons per annum, concern about their potential interactions with biological systems is growing. Herein, we utilize second harmonic generation spectroscopy, sum frequency generation spectroscopy, and quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation monitoring to probe the interactions between oxidized multiwalled carbon nanotubes (O-MWCNTs) and supported lipid bilayers composed of phospholipids with phosphatidylcholine head groups as the dominant component. We quantify O-MWCNT attachment to supported lipid bilayers under biogeochemically relevant conditions and discern that the interactions occur without disrupting the structural integrity of the lipid bilayers for the systems probed. The extent of O-MWCNT sorption was far below a monolayer even at 100 mM NaCl and was independent of the chemical composition of the supported lipid bilayer.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Fluorescent Dyes / chemistry*
  • Lipid Bilayers / chemistry*
  • Nanotubes, Carbon / chemistry*
  • Oxidation-Reduction


  • Fluorescent Dyes
  • Lipid Bilayers
  • Nanotubes, Carbon