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Scanning Probe Lithography on Fluid Lipid Membranes

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posted on 03.11.2004, 00:00 by Bryan L. Jackson, Jay T. Groves
Scanning probe lithography (SPL) is applied to pattern fluid lipid membranes on a solid borosilicate substrate. Grids of metal lines, prepatterned onto the substrate by electron beam lithography, serve to partition the supported membrane into an array of isolated fluid pixels. By toggling the pH of the surrounding solution, the effect of the probe tip on the membrane can be regulated. Alkaline conditions favor membrane removal, while neutral pH favors membrane deposition. Arbitrary membrane patterns with spatial dimensions limited by the underlying grid size can be constructed by sequential SPL membrane removal followed by refill with a different membrane type. In the present study, bilayers of unique composition fill 1 × 1 μm corrals and were positioned 100 nm apart.