Berberine alkaloid as a sensitive fluorescent probe for bile salt aggregates

Mónika Megyesi, László Biczók

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Effect of sodium cholate (NaC) bile salt on the absorption and fluorescence properties of berberine cation was studied in aqueous solution and water-cosolvent mixtures. The alteration of the fluorescent behavior with increasing NaC concentration showed an entirely different trend from that found previously in the presence of sodium dodecylsulfate. Binding to bile salt agglomerates led to significant fluorescence intensity enhancement, and the fluorescence lifetime of berberine proved to be highly sensitive to the structure and size of the aggregates. The dual exponential decay kinetics above 10 mM NaC concentration showed that the probe resided in two totally different binding sites. At 2-10 mM NaC concentrations, only primary aggregates were detected. The aggregate disrupting power of cosolvents decreased in the series of dimethylformamide, acetonitrile, formamide, and methanol. These compounds enhanced the water accessibility of berberine bound to aggregates and diminished the number of secondary aggregates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5635-5639
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry B
Issue number20
Publication statusPublished - May 24 2007


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry

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