Structural change in lipid bilayers and water penetration induced by shock waves: Molecular dynamics simulations

Kenichiro Koshiyama, Tetsuya Kodama, Takeru Yano, Shigeo Fujikawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

77 Citations (Scopus)


The structural change of a phospholipid bilayer in water under the action of a shock wave is numerically studied with unsteady nonequilibrium molecular dynamics simulations. The action of shock waves is modeled by the momentum change of water molecules, and thereby we demonstrate that the resulting collapse and rebound of the bilayer are followed by the penetration of water molecules into the hydrophobic region of the bilayer. The high-speed phenomenon that occurs during the collapse and rebound of the bilayer is analyzed in detail, particularly focusing on the change of bilayer thickness, the acyl chain bend angles, the lateral fluidity of lipid molecules, and the penetration rate of water molecules. The result shows that the high-speed phenomenon can be divided into two stages: in the first stage the thickness of bilayer and the order parameter are rapidly reduced, and then in the second stage they are recovered relatively slowly. It is in the second stage that water molecules are steadily introduced into the hydrophobic region. The penetration of water molecules is enhanced by the shock wave impulse and this qualitatively agrees with a recent experimental result.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2198-2205
Number of pages8
JournalBiophysical Journal
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2006

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics


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