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Structured Water Layers Adjacent to Biological Membranes

Below is an abstract from an interesting yet somewhat difficult paper on the manner in which water is "structured" through its interactions with large anionic proteins and K+ within the cell membrane. It is reminiscent of the work of Gilbert N. Ling, PhD on the intracellular structured water environment and his unifying Association-Induction Hypothesis.

It turns out that intracellular water may be structured. The work of chemist-materials scientist, John Willard, PhD on Catalyst Activated Water (structured water) using lignite may answer many questions for the homeopath and how water may convey what I call "environmental signal."

Water amid the restricted space of crowded biological macromolecules and at membrane interfaces is essential for cell function, though the structure and function of this “biological water” itself remains poorly defined. The force required to remove strongly bound water is referred to as the hydration force and due to its widespread importance, it has been studied in numerous systems. Here, by using a highly sensitive dynamic atomic force microscope technique in conjunction with a carbon nanotube probe, we reveal a hydration force with an oscillatory profile that reflects the removal of up to five structured water layers from between the probe and biological membrane surface. Further, we find that the hydration force can be modified by changing the membrane fluidity. For 1,2-dipalmitoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine gel (Lβ) phase bilayers, each oscillation in the force profile indicates the force required to displace a single layer of water molecules from between the probe and bilayer. In contrast, 1,2-dipalmitoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine fluid (Lα) phase bilayers at 60°C and 1,2-dioleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine fluid (Lα) phase bilayers at 24°C seriously disrupt the molecular ordering of the water and result predominantly in a monotonic force profile.

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