Effect of trace amounts of ionic surfactants on the zeta potential of DPPC liposomes

Alicja Sęk, Paulina Perczyk, Paweł Wydro, Wiesław I Gruszecki, Aleksandra Szcześ

Surfactants are commonly found in today's world as an essential component of cleaning detergents, cosmetics and drug delivery systems. They can penetrate into lipid membranes, thus changing their properties. The aim of this paper is to compare the effect of addition of small amounts of cationic (DTAB) and anionic surfactants (SDS) with the same alkyl chain length on the zeta potential of DPPC liposomes with their influence on the corresponding DPPC monolayers. It was found that the addition of ionic surfactants with an initial concentration in the solution equal to 2.3, 4.5 and 9.1 μM to the liposome suspension changes their electrokinetic potential significantly. These changes increase with the increasing surfactant concentration and are greater for the anionic surfactant. This indicates the incorporation of surfactants into the structure of liposomes. Based on the analysis of π-area isotherms of DPPC monolayers it was proved that the ionic surfactant molecules are irreversibly integrated into the DPPC monolayer.