Structural Investigation of Bulk and Dispersed Inverse Lyotropic Hexagonal Liquid Crystalline Phases of Eicosapentaenoic Acid Monoglyceride

Anan Yaghmur*, Sabah Al-Hosayni, Heinz Amenitsch, Stefan Salentinig

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recent studies demonstrated the potential therapeutic use of newly synthesized omega-3 (ω-3) polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) monoglycerides owing to their beneficial health effects in various disorders including cancer and inflammation diseases. To date, the research was mainly focused on exploring the biological effects of these functional lipids. However, to the best of our knowledge, there is no report on the hydration-mediated self assembly of these lipids that leads to the formation of nanostructures, which are attractive for use as vehicles for the delivery of drugs and functional foods. In the present study, we investigated the temperature-composition phase behaviour of eicosapentaenoic acid monoglyceride (MAG-EPA), which is one of the most investigated ω-3 PUFA monoglycerides, during a heating-cooling cycle in the temperature range of 5-60 °C. Experimental synchrotron small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) evidence on the formation of a dominant inverse hexagonal (H2) lyotropic liquid crystalline phase and its temperature-induced transition to an inverse micellar solution (L2 phase) is presented for the fully hydrated bulk MAG-EPA system and its corresponding dispersion. We produced colloidal MAG-EPA hexosomes with an internal inverse hexagonal (H2) lyotropic crystalline phase in the presence of F127, a well-known polymeric stabilizer, or citrem, which is a negatively charged food-grade emulsifier. In this work, we report also on the formation of MAG-EPA hexosomes by vortexing MAG-EPA in excess aqueous medium containing F127 at room temperature. This low-energy emulsification method is different than most reported studies in the literature that have demonstrated the need for using a high-energy input during the emulsification step or adding an organic solvent for the formation of such colloidal nonlamellar liquid crystalline dispersions. The designed nanoparticles hold promise for future drug and functional food delivery applications due to their unique structural properties and the potential health-promoting effects of MAG-EPA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14045-14057
Number of pages13
Issue number49
Publication statusPublished - 12 Dec 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Spectroscopy
  • Electrochemistry

Fields of Expertise

  • Advanced Materials Science
  • Human- & Biotechnology

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