Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Steroid hormones are known to freely partition into lipid bilayers. As a case study, we investigated the behavior of the steroid hormone cortisone in a model lipid bilayer. First, we looked at energy barriers involved in the partitioning of a single molecule into a bilayer using umbrella sampling molecular dynamics simulations. A rather wide well of -4.5 kcal/mol was observed in the interfacial region between the lipid headgroup and tailgroup. Next, using two unconstrained molecular dynamics simulations with cortisone initially positioned at distinct locations within a bilayer, we studied the preferred location and orientation of the molecule. Finally, we observed how cortisone molecules could spontaneously insert and localize in a bilayer from bulk solution. The three independent approaches produced a converged picture of how cortisone behaves in a model lipid bilayer.

Original publication




Journal article


Biophys J

Publication Date





L45 - L47


Cortisone, Lipid Bilayers, Models, Molecular, Phosphatidylcholines, Thermodynamics