Laboratorium Mikrokalorymetrii

Group leader

dr Małgorzata Jemioła-Rzemińska - Group Leader
+48 12 664 65 37

Zespół badawczy

Prof. dr hab. Kazimierz Strzałka
+48 12 664 6008; +48 12 664 65 09

Dagmara Kobza - student

Katarzyna Radoń - student

Obszar badań

Studies currently carried out in the laboratory are focused on the effect of small particles on the thermodynamic parameters of phospholipid phase transitions as well as the characteristic of interactions between foreign and host lipid molecules in model membranes. Among chemical compounds under studies are those of pharmaceutical importance including, saponins (solasodin, solanin, diosgenin), non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and memantine which is a NMDA antagonist receptor clinically used for treating Alzheimer's disease. Other drugs, including propranolol, acting as a beta-blocker and thimerosal, an organomercury compound, well established as antiseptic and antifungal agent as well as plant metabolites of antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and anticarcinogenic activities are also thoroughly investigated to elucidate the molecular mechanisms of interactions of these compounds with cell membranes.
Moreover, environmental and chemical factors influencing the structure and physicochemical properties of biological membranes are studied by calorimetry. Last but not least, acknowledged experience gives us a distinct advantage and expertise in determination of pigment composition of photosynthetic organisms as well as quantitative analysis of carotenoid and sugar content using HPLC.

Plany na przyszłość

Future research will focus on the investigation of biophysical properties of peptides, especially cyclotides,which are considered as plant defense peptides that act via membrane interactions. Over 200 cyclotides have been discovered in plants of the Rubiaceae, Violaceae, and Fabaceae families and all of them are characterized by a cyclic cysteine knot motif which is responsible for the remarkable stability of cyclotides in harsh thermal, chemical, and enzymatic conditions. This stability favors cyclotides as potential frameworks in peptide-based drug design.
Recent studies showed that cyclotides can bind to membranes of gut epithelial cells of cyclotide-fed H. armigera larvae and disrupt the cell. Based on it, one may expect that the mechanism of action of cyclotides involves membrane interactions. However, a molecular description of cyclotides interactions with lipids has only recently been developed. We will be interested in further understanding the molecular mechanism of action of cyclotides by focusing on the two bracelet cyclotides cyo2 and cyo13 having only one amino acid different in the sequence and showing dramatic differences on the hemolysis assay. First, the stability of cyo 2 and cyo 13 will be investigated by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). Then, taking advantage of isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC), we will define the thermodynamics of cyclotide binding to model membranes in order to address the question if cyclotides interact preferably with PE membranes and whether fatty acid composition of membrane bilayer is of any importance for cyclotide-membrane interactions. We will also try to assess how thermodynamic parameters of binding are affected by mutations in cyo, PE content of the phospholipid vesicles, temperature, and the presence of metal ions, to identify the factors that mediate cyclotide-lipid binding.


1. “Biological functions and mechanisms of action of unique lipid compounds, dolichols in cells of filamentous fungi”, 2015/17/B/NZ3/03618; - in collaboration with prof. dr hab. Joanna S. Kruszewska, Laboratory of Fungal Glicobiology, IBB Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw, Poland.
2. “Determination of the Mechanism of Action of Antileishmanial Peptides“ - in collaboration with dr. Marcela Manrique-Moreno; Grupo de Bioquímica Estructural de Macromoléculas; Instituto de Química, Facultad de Ciencias Exactas y Naturales; Universidad de Antioquia; Medellín, Colombia.
3. Effects of Selected Drugs on Lipid Bilayers and Human Erythrocytes: An In Vitro Study - in collaboration with prof. Mario Suwalsky, Faculty of Chemical Sciences, University of Concepcion, Concepcion, Chile.


  1. Jajic, I.; Wisniewska-Becker, A.; Sarna, T.; Jemiola-Rzeminska, M.; Strzalka, K. EPR spin labeling measurements of thylakoid membrane fluidity during barley leaf senescence. J. Plant Physiol. 2014, 171, 1046–1053.
  2. Manrique-Moreno, M.; Londoño-Londoño, J.; Jemioła-Rzemińska, M.; Strzałka, K.; Villena, F.; Avello, M.; Suwalsky, M. Structural effects of the Solanum steroids solasodine, diosgenin and solanine on human erythrocytes and molecular models of eukaryotic membranes. Biochim. Biophys. Acta - Biomembr. 2014, 1838, 266–277. 
  3. Suwalsky, M.; Jemiola-Rzeminska, M.; Astudillo, C.; Gallardo, M. J.; Staforelli, J. P.; Villena, F.; Strzalka, K. An in vitro study on the antioxidant capacity of usnic acid on human erythrocytes and molecular models of its membrane. Biochim. Biophys. Acta 2015, 1848, 2829–2838.
  4. Suwalsky, M.; Jemiola-Rzeminska, M.; Altamirano, M.; Villena, F.; Dukes, N.; Strzalka, K. Interactions of the antiviral and antiparkinson agent amantadine with lipid membranes and human erythrocytes. Biophys. Chem. 2015, 202, 13–20.
  5. Suwalsky, M.; Zambrano, P.; Villena, F.; Manrique-Moreno, M.; Gallardo, M. J.; Jemiola-Rzeminska, M.; Strzalka, K.; Edwards, A. M.; Mennickent, S.; Dukes, N. Morphological Effects Induced In Vitro by Propranolol on Human Erythrocytes. J. Membr. Biol. 2015, 248, 683–693.
  6. Kuczynska, P.; Jemiola-Rzeminska, M.; Strzalka, K. Photosynthetic pigments in diatoms. Mar. Drugs 2015, 13, 5847–5881.
  7. Augustynska, D.; Jemiola-Rzeminska, M.; Burda, K.; Strzalka, K. Influence of polar and nonpolar carotenoids on structural and adhesive properties of model membranes. Chem. Biol. Interact. 2015, 239, 19–25.
  8. Augustynska, D.; Burda, K.; Jemiola-Rzeminska, M.; Strzalka, K. Chemico-Biological Interactions Temperature-dependent bifurcation of cooperative interactions in pure and enriched in b -carotene DPPC liposomes. Chem. Biol. Interact. 2016, 256, 236–248. 
  9. Klaus, T.; Bzowska, M.; Kulesza, M.; Kabat, A. M.; Jemioła-Rzemińska, M.; Czaplicki, D.; Makuch, K.; Jucha, J.; Karabasz, A.; Bereta, J. Agglutinating mouse IgG3 compares favourably with IgMs in typing of the blood group B antigen : Functionality and stability studies. Sci. Rep. 2016, 6, 1–16.
  10. Suwalsky, M.; Colina, J.; Gallardo, M. J.; Jemiola-Rzeminska, M.; Strzalka, K.; Manrique-Moreno, M.; Sepu´lveda, B. Antioxidant Capacity of Gallic Acid in vitro Assayed on Human Erythrocytes. J. Membr. Biol. 2016, 249, 769-779.
  11. Suwalsky, M.; Zambrano, P.; Gallardo, M. J.; Villena, F.; Jemiola-Rzeminska, M.; Strzalka, K. Effects of Thimerosal on Lipid Bilayers and Human Erythrocytes: An In Vitro Study. J. Membr. Biol. 2016, 249, 823-831.
  12. Kuczynska, P.; Jemiola-Rzeminska, M. Isolation and purification of all-trans diadinoxanthin and all-trans diatoxanthin from diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum. J. Appl. Phycol. 2017, 29, 79-87.
  13. Jagusiak, A., Piekarska, B.; Panczyk, T.; Jemiola-Rzeminska, M.; Bielanska, E.; Stopa, B.; Zemanek, G.; Rybarska, J.; Roterman, I.; Konieczny, L. Dispersion of single-wall carbon nanotubes with supramolecular Congo red - properties of the complexes and mechanism of the interaction. Beilstein J. Nanotechnol. 2017, 8, 636-648.