Microencapsulation of organic solvents in polyelectrolyte multilayer micrometer-sized shells

S. Moya, G. B. Sukhorukov, M. Auch, E. Donath, H. Möhwald

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

90 Citations (Scopus)


Hollow-shell micrometer-sized particles were fabricated in aqueous media by stepwise deposition of oppositely charged polyelectrolytes onto melamine latex particles and biological cells with a dissolution of the core afterward. It is demonstrated that these shells can be suspended in various organic media, such as methanol, ethanol, pentanol, hexanol, octanol, octane, and decane, by a gradual solvent exchange. At this stage of the procedure the shells contain the respective organic solvent. Oil suspensions in water are then formed by transferring the particles from the organic media into water, without the use of any further surfactant addition. By an additional adsorption step employing phospholipids, it is possible to obtain a dispersion of shells in organic solvents containing an aqueous solution inside. AFM measurements are provided which show that the shells preserve their integrity in the different solvents. Confocal microscopy is employed to demonstrate encapsulation of solvents and the presence of lipids.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)297-302
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Colloid and Interface Science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 15 Aug 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • Emulsions
  • Lipid assembly
  • Microencapsulation
  • Organic solvents
  • Polyelectrolytes


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