: The mutual influence of chiral bioactive molecules and supramolecular assemblies is currently being studied in many research fields, including medical-pharmaceutical applications. Model membranes of phospholipids, such as the zwitterionic dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine (DPPC) and the anionic dipalmitoylphosphatidylglycerol (DPPG), interact with a variety of chiral compounds that include amino acids. In this work, the interaction of tryptophan enantiomers, L-Trp and D-Trp, on DPPC and DPPG bilayers was investigated by using differential scanning calorimetry, attenuated total reflectance-Fourier transform infrared and spin-label electron spin resonance spectroscopies as well as molecular docking simulations. The results show that Trp enantiomers slightly perturb the bilayer thermotropic phase transitions. For both membranes, O atoms in the carbonyl groups have a propensity to act as acceptors of a (weak) hydrogen bond. The Trp chiral forms also promote formation of hydrogen bonds and/or hydration in the PO2- moiety of the phosphate group, especially for the DPPC bilayer. In contrast, they interact more closely with the glycerol group of DPPG polar head. Only for DPPC bilayers, both enantiomers increase the packing of the first hydrocarbon chain segments for temperatures through the gel state, whereas they do not affect the lipid chain order and mobility in the fluid state. The results are consistent with a Trp association in the upper region of the bilayers without permeation in the innermost hydrophobic region. The findings suggest that neutral and anionic lipid bilayers are differently sensitive to amino acid chirality.
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