Are monodisperse phospholipid-coated microbubbles “mono-acoustic?”

Sander Spiekhout, Benjamin van Elburg, Jason Voorneveld, Nico de Jong, Michel Versluis, Johannes G. Bosch, Tim Segers*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Phospholipid-coated microbubbles with a uniform acoustic response are a promising avenue for functional ultrasound sensing. A uniform acoustic response requires both a monodisperse size distribution and uniform viscoelastic shell properties. Monodisperse microbubbles can be produced in a microfluidic flow focusing device. Here, we investigate whether such monodisperse microbubbles have uniform viscoelastic shell properties and thereby a uniform “mono-acoustic” response. To this end, we visualized phase separation of the DSPC and DPPE-PEG5000 lipid shell components and measured the resonance curves of nearly 2000 single and freely floating microbubbles using a high-frequency acoustic scattering technique. The results demonstrate inhomogeneous phase-separated shell microdomains across the monodisperse bubble population, which may explain the measured inhomogeneous viscoelastic shell properties. The shell viscosity varied over an order of magnitude and the resonance frequency by a factor of two indicating both a variation in shell elasticity and in initial surface tension despite the relatively narrow size distribution.

Original languageEnglish
Article number231601
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Volume124
Issue number23
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jun 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright: © 2024 Author(s).

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