The effect of steady shear and turbulent flow on the formation of amyloid fibrils from hen egg white lysozyme (HEWL) was studied. The conversion and size distribution of fibrils obtained by heating HEWL solutions at pH 2 were determined. The formation of fibrils was quantified using flow-induced birefringence. The size distribution was fitted using decay of birefringence measurements and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The morphology of HEWL fibrils and the kinetics of their formation varied considerably depending on the flow applied. With increasing shear or stirring rate, more rod-like and shorter fibrils were obtained, and the conversion into fibrils was increased. The size distribution and final fibril concentration were significantly different from those obtained in the same heat treatment at rest. The width of the length distribution of fibrils was influenced by the homogeneity of the flow.
- amyloid fibrils