Europhys. Lett.
Volume 71, Number 3, August 2005
Page(s) 508 - 514
Section Interdisciplinary physics and related areas of science and technology
Published online 13 July 2005
Europhys. Lett., 71 (3), pp. 508-514 (2005)
DOI: 10.1209/epl/i2005-10098-x

A simple mechanism of raft formation in two-component fluid membranes

L. Foret

Department of Physics, Kyoto University - Kyoto 606-8502, Japan

received 7 March 2005; accepted in final form 6 June 2005
published online 13 July 2005

We present a simple model of two-component fluid membranes undergoing simultaneously a phase separation and permanent exchange of lipids with the surrounding medium. The balance of these two effects leads to the formation of stable domains of particular lipid composition. The characteristic size of the domains is controlled by the exchange rates of the lipids. This provides a simple mechanism for raft formation in out-of-equilibrium binary fluid membrane.

87.16.Ac - Theory and modeling; computer simulation.
87.16.Dg - Membranes, bilayers, and vesicles.
64.75.+g - Solubility, segregation, and mixing; phase separation.

© EDP Sciences 2005