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Projekti Hrvatske zaklade za znanost
Total cost
Start date
Feb 1st 2021
End date
Jan 31st 2026

Principal investigator


Myelin is multibilayered, dominantly lipid sheath that enwraps axons and ensures proper transmission of neural impulses. Loss of myelin integrity in terms of redundant unwrapping, vacuole formation and swelling of the bilayer sheaths is referred as demyelination and is related to multiple sclerosis. In vivo studies reported that the amounts of representative lipids, including phosphatidylethanolamines (PEs), are significantly changed in diseased compared to healthy animals, and are further accompanied by reduced adhesive activity of myelin basic protein (MBP). The impact of the amount of PE in mixed model lipid membranes on the transition temperature between lamellar (La) to inverse hexagonal (HII) phase, where the latter shares structural features with vacuole formation, is significant but rather elusive issue. The aim of this proposal is to establish a link between this temperature change and the size and arrangement of PE domains in mixed model lipid membranes in the presence and absence of MBP. Model myelin membranes will be prepared from representative myelin lipids according to their ratios found in normal and diseased species. La to HII phase transitions of PE domains will be studied by probing different surroundings of PE domains within the bilayer, along with the variations in the hydrating medium regarding the presence of MBP and ionic content. A detailed molecular picture of these events will be provided by combining temperature-dependent IR spectroscopy and computational chemistry; structural changes of PE domain during this phase transition will be identified together with the interactions between PE, MBP and neighboring domains. As a result, the parameters considered as the most critical in reduction of La to HII phase transition temperature will be revealed. Aside of understanding demyelination at the molecular level, obtained results will help in suggesting possible solutions in lipid composition regulation by medications and appropriate nutrition.


16. Maleš P, Nikšić-Franjić I, Wang A, Pem B, Bakarić D. Optical and molecular features of negatively curved surfaces created by POPE lipids: A crucial role of the initial conditions // Spectrochimica acta. Part A, Molecular and biomolecular spectroscopy, 317 (2024), 124462, 12. doi: 10.1016/j.saa.2024.124462

15. Pavlek AM, Pem B, Bakarić D. The Signature of Fluctuations of the Hydrogen Bond Network Formed by Water Molecules in the Interfacial Layer of Anionic Lipids // Biophysica, 4 (2024), 1; 92-106. doi: 10.3390/biophysica4010007

14. Maleš P, Brkljača Z, Crnolatac I, Petrov D, Bakarić D. Phase-Dependent Adsorption of Myelin Basic Protein to Phosphatidylcholine Lipid Bilayers // Membranes, 14 (2024), 1; 15, 20. doi:

13. Pašalić L, Maleš P, Čikoš A, Pem B, Bakarić D. The rise of FTIR spectroscopy in the characterization of asymmetric lipid membranes // Spectrochimica acta. Part A, Molecular and biomolecular spectroscopy (2024) ), 123488, 13, doi: 10.1016/j.saa.2023.123488

12. Pašalić L, Jakas A, Pem B, Bakarić D. Adsorption/Desorption of Cationic-Hydrophobic Peptides on Zwitterionic Lipid Bilayer Is Associated with the Possibility of Proton Transfer // Antibiotics (2023) 12, 1216, doi: 10.3390/antibiotics12071216

11. Pem B, Brkljača Z, Philippe A, Schaumann GE, Vazdar M, Bakarić D. FTIR spectroscopy and molecular level insight of diluted aqueous solutions of acetic acid // Spectrochimica Acta Part A: Molecular and Biomolecular Spectroscopy (2023) 123135, 10, doi: 10.1016/j.saa.2023.123135

10. Pašalić L, Liu Q, Vukosav P, Mišić Radić T, Azziz A, Majdinasab M, Edely M, Lamy de la Chapelle M, Bakarić D. The presence of uncoated gold nanoparticle aggregates may alter the phase of phosphatidylcholine lipid as evidenced by vibrational spectroscopies // Journal of Liposome Research (2023) doi: 10.1080/08982104.2023.2239905

9. Pašalić L, Pem B, Domazet Jurašin D, Vazdar M, Bakarić D. Interaction of guanidinium and ammonium cations with phosphatidylcholine and phosphatidylserine lipid bilayers – Calorimetric, spectroscopic and molecular dynamics simulations study // Biochimica et biophysica acta. Biomembranes (2023) doi: 10.1016/j.bbamem.2023.184122

8. Vukosav P, Pašalić L, Bakarić D, Domazet Jurašin D, Mišić Radić T. Interaction of Silica Nanoparticles with Microalgal Extracellular Polymers // Water, 15 (2023), 3; 159-159 doi: 10.3390/w15030519

7. Pašalić L, Pem B, Bakarić D. Lamellarity-Driven Differences in Surface Structural Features of DPPS Lipids: Spectroscopic, Calorimetric and Computational Study // Membranes, 13 (2023), 83, 22 doi: 10.3390/membranes13010083

6. Ćehić M, Brkljača Z, Filić Ž, Crnolatac I, Vujaklija D, Bakarić D. (Un)coupling the factors contributing to the interfacial activation of Streptomyces rimosus lipase: computational and spectrophotometric study. Journal of dispersion science and technology (2023), in press, doi: 10.1080/01932691.2022.2145304

5. Maleš P, Butumović M, Erceg I, Brkljača Z, Bakarić D. Influence of DPPE surface undulations on melting temperature determination: UV/Vis spectroscopic and MD study. Biochimica et biophysica acta. Biomembranes, 1865 (2023), 1; 184072, 9, doi: 10.1016/j.bbamem.2022.184072

4. Brkljača Z, Butumović M, Bakarić D. Water Does Not Dance as Ions Sing: a New Approach in Elucidation of Ion-Invariant Water Fluctuations. Spectrochimica acta. Part A, Molecular and biomolecular spectroscopy, 271 (2022), 120907, 9 doi: 10.1016/j.saa.2022.120907

3. Maleš P, Brkljača Z, Domazet Jurašin D, Bakarić D. New spirit of an old technique: Characterization of lipid phase transitions via UV/Vis spectroscopy. Spectrochimica acta. Part A, Molecular and biomolecular spectroscopy, 272 (2022), 121013, 7, doi: 10.1016/j.saa.2022.121013

2. Brkljača Z, Ćehić M, Portada T, Butumović M, Bakarić D, Crnolatac I. Monitoring lipid phase transition temperatures using fluorescent probes and temperature-dependent fluorescence spectroscopy. Dyes and pigments, 206 (2022), 110621, 10, doi: 10.1016/j.dyepig.2022.110621

1. Maleš P, Pem B, Petrov D, Domazet Jurašin D, Bakarić D. Deciphering the origin of the melting profile of unilamellar phosphatidylcholine liposomes by measuring the turbidity of its suspensions. Soft matter, 18 (2022), 6703-6715, doi: 10.1039/D2SM00878E


2. Munivrana, Jana. Determination of the main phase transition temperature of neutral lipids by UV/Vis spectroscopy, 2022., diploma thesis, Faculty of Science, University of Zagreb

1. Butumović, Marija. Investigation of the influence of ions on the crosslinking of water molecules by FT-IR spectroscopy, 2021., diploma thesis, Faculty of Science, University of Zagreb


26. Maleš P, Bakarić D. The significance of cholesterol for myelin lipid phases // XV Meeting Of Young Chemical Engineers - Book Of Abstracts / XV. susret mladih kemijskih inženjera - knjiga sažetaka. Zagreb: Hrvatsko društvo kemijskih inženjera i tehnologa (HDKI), 2024. p. 26-26 (poster)
25. Pašalić L, Mangiarotti A, Jakas A, Bakarić D. Potential cell penetrating peptides in interaction with lipid bilayers // 7th Mini Symposium of Section of Medicinal and Pharmaceutical Chemistry: Book of Abstracts. Zagreb: HKD - sekcija za medicinsku i farmaceutsku kemiju, 2023. p. 3.-3 (poster)
24. Maleš P, Bakarić D. The revelation of interactions in model myelin with FTIR spectroscopy // ICAVS12: International Conference on Advanced Vibrational Spectroscopy, Krakow, Poljska, 2023. p. 283-283. (poster)
23. Pem B, Pašalić L, Bakarić D. Lipid interactions with different cationic peptides: towards the understanding of membrane disrupting activity // IX EFMC International Symposium on Advances in Synthetic and Medicinal Chemistry, Zagreb, Hrvatska, 2023. p. 278-278. (poster)
22. Maleš P, Mangiarotti A, Bakarić D. What to Say about the Structural Integrity of Myelin? // Peptide Chemistry Day, Zagreb, Hrvatska, 2023. p. 25-25. (poster)
21. Pašalić L, Jakas A, Mangiarotti A, Bakarić D. Influence of cationic peptides on the properties of unilamellar phosphatidylcholine vesicles // Peptide chemistry day 2023 : Book of abstracts. Zagreb: Hrvatsko kemijsko društvo; Sveučilište u Zagrebu, 2023. p. 15.-15 (poster)   
20. Pem B, Bakarić D. Molecular Dynamics Study of  Cationic Peptide Adsorption on Zwitterionic Lipid Bilayers // Peptide chemistry day 2023 : Book of abstracts. Zagreb: Hrvatsko kemijsko društvo; University of Zagreb, 2023. p. 24-24 (poster)

19. Pem B, Bakarić D. Structural Differences of Symmetric and Asymmetric Mixed-Lipid Bilayers Observed by Classical Molecular Dynamics // Computational Chemistry Day 2023, Zagreb, Croatia, 2023. p. 25-25. (poster)

18. Bakarić D, Pašalić L, Maleš P, Pem B, Čikoš A. Synergy of NMR and FTIR spectroscopy in the characterization of asymmetric liposomes // 7th Adriatic NMR Conference, Mali Ston, Croatia, 2023. p. 41-41 (lecture)

17. Pašalić L, Bakarić D, Jakas A. Arginine-rich peptides vs. Lysine-rich peptides: impact on differently charged lipid bilayers // 7th Faculty of Science PhD Student Symposium, Zagreb, Croatia, 2023. p.51-51 (lecture)

16. Maleš P, Bakarić D. The signature of inverse hexagonal phase of phosphoethanolamine lipids // 28HSKIKI, Rovinj, Croatia, 2023. p. 98-98 (poster)

15. Pašalić L, Bakarić D, Liu Q, Lamy de la Chapelle M. Physical-chemical properties of DPPC liposomes in the presence of gold nanoparticles aggregates 28HSKIKI, Rovinj, Croatia, 2023. p. 112-112 (poster)

14. Pašalić L, Bakarić D. Thermotropic properties of unilamellar and multilamellar DPPS bilayers. Supramolecular Chemistry 2022, Zagreb, Croatia, 2022. p. 32-32 (poster)

13. Pašalić L, Bakarić D. Utjecaj NH4+ i Gdm+ kationa na termička svojstva DPPS lipidnih membrana. 6th Faculty of Science PhD Student Symposium, Zagreb, Croatia, 2022. p. 148-149 (poster)

12. Pašalić L, Bakarić D. Impact of different cations on thermal properties of DPPS and DPPC bilayers. European Student Colloid Conference, Szeged, Hungary, 2022. p. 92-92 (poster)

11. Bakarić D, Pašalić L, Pem B. Experimental and computational insight into the surface curvature of DPPS lipid bilayers. 16tℎChristmas Biophysics Workshop, Brdo pri Kranju, Slovenia, 2022. p. 16-16 (lecture)

10. Maleš P, Munivrana J, Pašalić L, Bakarić D. The complexity of brain sphingomyelin. Supramolecular Chemistry 22 Book of Abstracts, Frkanec L, Namjesnik D, Tomišić V (ur.). Zagreb: Institut Ruđer Bošković, 2022. p.45-45 (poster)

9. Pem B, Bakarić D. Discerning the Structure and Hydration of Unilamellar and Multilamellar Phosphatidylserine Bilayers Using Molecular Dynamics. Supramolecular Chemistry 2022 Book of Abstracts, Frkanec L, Namjesnik D, Tomišić V (ur.). Zagreb: Institut Ruđer Bošković, 2022. p. 31-31 (poster)

8. Maleš P, Pašalić L, Munivrana J, Bakarić D. Zoom in the brain sphingomyelin. Chemistry towards Biology (CTB10)- Instruct. Bratislava, Slovakia, 2022. (poster)

7. Maleš P, Brkljača Z, Bakarić D. Do the myelin basic protein and phosphatidylcholine lipids like to dance together?. 6. Simpozij studenata doktorskih studija PMF-a. Zagreb, Croatia, 2022. (poster)

6. Maleš P, Brkljača Z, Bakarić D. Love or compulsion relationship between myelin basic protein and phosphatidylcholine lipids. 14. susret mladih kemijskih inženjera (SMLKI). Zagreb, Croatia, 2022. (poster)

5. Bakarić D, Maleš P, Brkljača Z, Butumović M, Erceg I. UV/Vis Spectroscopy in Distinction of Lipid Bilayers Structural Features. 36th European Colloid & Interface Society Conference / Konstantakis G (ur.). Heraklion, Greece: Diazoma Conferences & Events, 2022. p. 280-280 (poster)

4. Pem B, Bakarić D. Molecular Dynamics Study of the Interaction of Guanidinium and Ammonium Cations with Zwitterionic and Anionic Lipid Bilayers. CCD2022-Book of Abstracts. Zagreb: University of Zagreb Faculty of Science, 2022. p. 24-24 (poster)

3. Pem B, Bakarić D. Molecular dynamics study of phosphatidylcholine bilayers with the addition of phosphatidylglycerol. Math/Chem/Comp 2022 and 33rd MC2 Conference : Book of Abstracts, Vančik H, Cioslowski J, Namjesnik D (ur.). Zagreb: Croatian Chemical Society, 2022. p. 33-33 (poster)

2. Bakarić D, Domazet Jurašin D, Brkljača Z, Maleš P. Ion influence on pretransition of multilamellar phosphatidylcholine liposomes. 27. HSKIKI Veli Lošinj, Croatia, 2021. (poster)

1. Brkljača Z, Butumović M, Bakarić D. Are ions reflected in water IR signature?. 11th International Conference on Advanced Vibrational Spectroscopy : Book of Abstracts. Krakow, Poland, 2021. p. 129-129 (lecture)

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