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Membrane electroporation theories: a review

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JournalMedical and Biological Engineering and Computing
DatePublished - Mar 2006
Issue number1-2
Volume44
Number of pages10
Pages (from-to)5-14
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Electroporation, the transient increase in the permeability of cell membranes when exposed to a high electric field, is an established in vitro technique and is used to introduce DNA or other molecules into cells. When the trans-membrane voltage induced by an external electric field exceeds a certain threshold (normally 0.2-1 V), a rearrangement of the molecular structure of the membrane occurs, leading to pore formation in the membrane and a considerable increase in the cell membrane permeability to ions, molecules and even macromolecules. This phenomenon is, potentially, the basis for many in vivo applications such as electrochemotherapy and gene therapy, but still lacks a comprehensive theoretical basis. This article reviews the state of current electroporation theories and briefly considers current and potential applications in biology and medicine.

    Research areas

  • electroporation, electropermeabilisation, cell membrane, aqueous pore model, electric fields, REVERSIBLE ELECTRICAL BREAKDOWN, PLANAR BILAYER-MEMBRANES, IN-VIVO ELECTROPORATION, LIPID-BILAYERS, CELL-MEMBRANES, FIELD, STABILITY, MODEL, ELECTROPERMEABILIZATION, SIMULATION

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