Coalescence and breakup of oppositely charged droplets.
ABSTRACT: The coalescence process of oppositely charged drops for different electrical conductivities of liquids is presented. When the electrical conductivity was relatively low, oppositely charged drops failed to coalesce under sufficiently high electrical fields and capillary ripples were formed on the surfaces of droplets after rebound. For a high electrically conductive liquid, it was found that a crown profile of drop fission always appeared on the top surface of negatively charged drops after the two charged drops contacted and bounced off. Furthermore, we report here, for the first time, the newly found phenomenon and argue that the break up might be caused by Rayleigh instability, a form of Coulomb fission. The different mobility of positive and negative ions is the underlying mechanism that explains why the break up always happened on the negative side of charged drops.
Project description:Like charges stabilize emulsions, whereas opposite charges break emulsions. This is the fundamental principle for many industrial and practical processes. Using micrometer-sized pH-sensitive polymeric hydrogel particles as emulsion stabilizers, we prepare emulsions that consist of oppositely charged droplets, which do not coalesce. We observe noncoalescence of oppositely charged droplets in bulk emulsification as well as in microfluidic devices, where oppositely charged droplets are forced to collide within channel junctions. The results demonstrate that electrostatic interactions between droplets do not determine their stability and reveal the unique pH-dependent properties of emulsions stabilized by soft microgel particles. The noncoalescence can be switched to coalescence by neutralizing the microgels, and the emulsion can be broken on demand. This unusual feature of the microgel-stabilized emulsions offers fascinating opportunities for future applications of these systems.
Project description:We report the first example of reversible encapsulation of micron-sized particles by oppositely charged submicron smaller colloids. The reversibility of this encapsulation process is regulated by pH-responsive poly(acrylic acid) (PAA) present in solution. The competitive adsorption between the small colloids and the poly(acrylic acid) on the surface of the large colloids plays a key role in the encapsulation behavior of the system. pH offers an experimental knob to tune the electrostatic interactions between the two oppositely charged particle species via regulation of the charge density of the poly(acrylic acid). This results in an increased surface coverage of the large colloids by the smaller colloids when decreasing pH. Furthermore, the poly(acrylic acid) also acts as a steric barrier limiting the strength of the attractive forces between the oppositely charged particle species, thereby enabling detachment of the smaller colloids. Finally, based on the pH tunability of the encapsulation behavior and the ability of the small colloids to detach, reversible encapsulation is achieved by cycling pH in the presence of the PAA polyelectrolytes. The role of polyelectrolytes revealed in this work provides a new and facile strategy to control heteroaggregation behavior between oppositely charged colloids, paving the way to prepare sophisticated hierarchical assemblies.
Project description:Coulombic interactions can be used to assemble charged nanoparticles into higher-order structures, but the process requires oppositely charged partners that are similarly sized. The ability to mediate the assembly of such charged nanoparticles using structurally simple small molecules would greatly facilitate the fabrication of nanostructured materials and harnessing their applications in catalysis, sensing and photonics. Here we show that small molecules with as few as three electric charges can effectively induce attractive interactions between oppositely charged nanoparticles in water. These interactions can guide the assembly of charged nanoparticles into colloidal crystals of a quality previously only thought to result from their co-crystallization with oppositely charged nanoparticles of a similar size. Transient nanoparticle assemblies can be generated using positively charged nanoparticles and multiply charged anions that are enzymatically hydrolysed into mono- and/or dianions. Our findings demonstrate an approach for the facile fabrication, manipulation and further investigation of static and dynamic nanostructured materials in aqueous environments.
Project description:Ion-mediated interactions between like-charged polyelectrolytes have been paid much attention, and the Poisson-Boltzmann (PB) theory has been shown to fail in qualitatively predicting multivalent ion-mediated like-charge attraction. However, inadequate attention has been paid to the ion-mediated interactions between oppositely charged polyelectrolytes. In this work, the potentials of mean force (PMF) between oppositely charged nanoparticles in 1:1 and 2:2 salt solutions were investigated by Monte Carlo simulations and the PB theory. Our calculations show that the PMFs between oppositely charged nanoparticles are generally attractive in 1:1 and 2:2 salt solutions and that such attractive PMFs become weaker at higher 1:1 or 2:2 salt concentrations. The comprehensive comparisons show that the PB theory can quantitatively predict the PMFs between oppositely charged nanoparticles in 1:1 salt solutions, except for the slight deviation at very high 1:1 salt concentration. However, for 2:2 salt solutions, the PB theory generally overestimates the attractive PMF between oppositely charged nanoparticles, and this overestimation becomes more pronounced for nanoparticles with higher charge density and for higher 2:2 salt concentration. Our microscopic analyses suggest that the overestimation of the PB theory on the attractive PMFs for 2:2 salt solutions is attributed to the underestimation of divalent ions bound to nanoparticles.
Project description:In this present report, luminescent ordered multilayer thin films (OMFs) based on oppositely-charged inorganic nanosheets and the different oppositely-charged chromophores were fabricated via layer-by-layer assembly method. Exfoliated layered double hydroxides (LDHs) and montmorillonite (MMT) nanosheets with opposite charges can be expected to provide a pseudo electronic microenvironment (PEM) which has not been declared in previous literatures, and transition metal-bearing LDHs nanosheets can offer an additional ferromagnetic effect (FME) for the chromophores at the same time. Surprisingly, the luminescent lifetimes of those OMFs with PEM and FME are significantly prolonged compared with that of the pristine chromophores, even much longer than those of OMFs without oppositely-charged and ferromagnetic architecture. Therefore, it is highly expected that the PEM and FME formed by oppositely-charged and transition metal-bearing inorganic nanosheets have remarkable influence on obtaining better optical property, which suggests a new potential way to manipulate, control and develop the novel light-emitting materials and optical devices.
Project description:The current state-of-the-art for drug-carrying biomedical devices is mostly limited to those that release a single drug. Yet there are many situations in which more than one therapeutic agent is needed. Also, most polyelectrolyte multilayer films intended for drug delivery are loaded with active molecules only during multilayer film preparation. In this paper, we present the integration of capsules as vehicles within polypeptide multilayer films for sustained release of multiple oppositely charged drug molecules using layer-by-layer nanoassembly technology. Calcium carbonate (CaCO(3)) particles were impregnated with polyelectrolytes, shelled with polyelectrolyte multilayers, and then assembled onto polypeptide multilayer films using glutaraldehyde. Capsule-integrated polypeptide multilayer films were obtained after decomposition of CaCO(3) templates. Two oppositely charged drugs were loaded into capsules within polypeptide multilayer films postpreparation based on electrostatic interactions between the drugs and the polyelectrolytes impregnated within capsules. We determined that the developed innovative capsule-integrated polypeptide multilayer films could be used to load multiple drugs of very different properties (e.g., opposite charges) any time postpreparation (e.g., minutes before surgical implantation inside an operating room), and such capsule-integrated films allowed simultaneous delivery of two oppositely charged drug molecules and a sustained (up to two weeks or longer) and sequential release was achieved.
Project description:The global dimensions and amplitudes of conformational fluctuations of intrinsically disordered proteins are governed, in part, by the linear segregation versus clustering of oppositely charged residues within the primary sequence. Ion mobility-mass spectrometry (IM-MS) affords unique advantages for probing the conformational consequences of the linear patterning of oppositely charged residues because it measures and separates proteins electrosprayed from solution on the basis of charge and shape. Here, we use IM-MS to measure the conformational consequences of charge patterning on the C-terminal intrinsically disordered region (p27 IDR) of the cell cycle inhibitory protein p27Kip1. We report the range of charge states and accompanying collisional cross section distributions for wild-type p27 IDR and two variants with identical amino acid compositions, ?14 and ?56, distinguished by the extent of linear mixing versus segregation of oppositely charged residues. Wild-type p27 IDR (?31) and ?14, where the oppositely charged residues are more evenly distributed, exhibit a broad distribution of charge states. This is concordant with high degrees of conformational heterogeneity in solution. By contrast, ?56 with linear segregation of oppositely charged residues leads to limited conformational heterogeneity and a narrow distribution of charged states. Gas-phase molecular dynamics simulations demonstrate that the interplay between chain solvation and intrachain interactions (self-solvation) leads to conformational distributions that are modulated by salt concentration, with the wild-type sequence showing the most sensitivity to changes in salt concentration. These results suggest that the charge patterning within the wild-type p27 IDR may be optimized to sample both highly solvated and self-solvated conformational states.
Project description:The functions of intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) are governed by relationships between information encoded in their amino acid sequences and the ensembles of conformations that they sample as autonomous units. Most IDPs are polyampholytes, with sequences that include both positively and negatively charged residues. Accordingly, we focus here on the sequence-ensemble relationships of polyampholytic IDPs. The fraction of charged residues discriminates between weak and strong polyampholytes. Using atomistic simulations, we show that weak polyampholytes form globules, whereas the conformational preferences of strong polyampholytes are determined by a combination of fraction of charged residues values and the linear sequence distributions of oppositely charged residues. We quantify the latter using a patterning parameter ? that lies between zero and one. The value of ? is low for well-mixed sequences, and in these sequences, intrachain electrostatic repulsions and attractions are counterbalanced, leading to the unmasking of preferences for conformations that resemble either self-avoiding random walks or generic Flory random coils. Segregation of oppositely charged residues within linear sequences leads to high ?-values and preferences for hairpin-like conformations caused by long-range electrostatic attractions induced by conformational fluctuations. We propose a scaling theory to explain the sequence-encoded conformational properties of strong polyampholytes. We show that naturally occurring strong polyampholytes have low ?-values, and this feature implies a selection for random coil ensembles. The design of sequences with different ?-values demonstrably alters the conformational preferences of polyampholytic IDPs, and this ability could become a useful tool for enabling direct inquiries into connections between sequence-ensemble relationships and functions of IDPs.
Project description:The repulsive interaction between oppositely charged macroions is investigated using Grand Canonical Monte Carlo simulations of an unrestricted primitive model, including the effect of inhomogeneous surface charge and its density, the depth of surface charge, the cation size, and the dielectric permittivity of solvent and macroions, and their contrast. The origin of the repulsion is a combination of osmotic pressure and ionic screening resulting from excess salt between the macroions. The excess charge over-reduces the electrostatic attraction between macroions and raises the entropic repulsion. The magnitude of the repulsion increases when the dielectric constant of the solvent is lowered (below that of water) and/or the surface charge density is increased, in good agreement with experiment. Smaller size of surface charge and the cation, their discreteness and mobility are other factors that enhance the repulsion and charge inversion phenomenons.
Project description:Using the ground state dominance approximation and a variational theory, we study the encapsulation of a polyelectrolyte chain by an oppositely charged spherical surface. The electrostatic attraction between the polyelectrolyte and the surface and the entropy loss of the encapsulated polyelectrolyte chain dictate the optimum conditions for encapsulation. Two scenarios of encapsulation are identified: entropy-dominated and adsorption-dominated encapsulation. In the entropy-dominated encapsulation regime, the polyelectrolyte chain is delocalized, and the optimum radius of the encapsulating sphere decreases with increasing the attraction. In the adsorption-dominated encapsulation regime, the polyelectrolyte chain is strongly localized near the surface, and the optimum radius increases with increasing the attraction. After identifying a universal encapsulation parameter, the dependencies of the optimum radius on the salt concentration, surface charge density, polymer charge density, and polymer length are explored.