Growth and adhesion properties of monosodium urate monohydrate (MSU) crystals
Perrin, Clare M.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Georgetown University, 2011.; Includes bibliographical references.; Text (Electronic thesis) in PDF format. The presence of monosodium urate monohydrate (MSU) crystals in the synovial fluid has long been associated with the joint disease gout. To elucidate the molecular level growth mechanism and adhesive properties of MSU crystals, atomic force microscopy (AFM), scanning electron microscopy, and dynamic light scattering (DLS) techniques were employed in the characterization of the (010) and (1-10) faces of MSU, as well as physiologically relevant solutions supersaturated with urate.; Topographical AFM imaging of both MSU (010) and (1-10) revealed the presence of crystalline layers of urate arranged into v-shaped features of varying height. Growth rates were measured for both monolayers (elementary steps) and multiple layers (macrosteps) on both crystal faces under a wide range of urate supersaturation in physiologically relevant solutions. Step velocities for monolayers and multiple layers displayed a second order polynomial dependence on urate supersaturation on MSU (010) and (1-10), with step velocities on (1-10) generally half of those measured on MSU (010) in corresponding growth conditions.; Perpendicular step velocities on MSU (010) were obtained and also showed a second order polynomial dependence of step velocity with respect to urate supersaturation, which implies a 2D-island nucleation growth mechanism for MSU (010). Extensive topographical imaging of MSU (010) showed island adsorption from urate growth solutions under all urate solution concentrations investigated, lending further support for the determined growth mechanism. Island sizes derived from DLS experiments on growth solutions were in agreement with those measured on MSU (010) topographical images.; Chemical force microscopy (CFM) was utilized to characterize the adhesive properties of MSU (010) and (1-10). AFM probes functionalized with amino acid derivatives and bio-macromolecules found in the synovial fluid were brought into contact with both crystal faces and adhesion forces were tabulated into histograms for comparison. AFM probes functionalized with -COO-, -CH3, and -OH functionalities displayed similar adhesion force with both crystal surfaces of MSU, while adhesion force on (1-10) was three times greater than (010) for -NH2+ probes. For AFM probes functionalized with bovine serum albumin, adhesion force was three times greater on MSU (1-10) than (010), most likely due to the more ionic nature of (1-10).
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Presores, Janeth (Georgetown University, 2012)Uric acid, a product of protein metabolism, is the most abundant organic component in human kidney stones. At least six different crystalline phases of uric acid have been identified in kidney stones. Anhydrous uric acid ...