Colloids and Interfaces in Life Sciences and Bionanotechnology: 2nd Edition (Hardback) book cover

Colloids and Interfaces in Life Sciences and Bionanotechnology

2nd Edition

By Willem Norde

CRC Press

495 pages | 256 B/W Illus.

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Colloidal systems occur everywhere—in soils, seawater, foodstuff, pharmaceuticals, paints, blood, biological cells, and microorganisms. Colloids and Interfaces in Life Sciences and Bionanotechnology, Second Edition, gives a concise treatment of physicochemical principles determining interrelated colloidal and interfacial phenomena.

New in the Second Edition:

  • New topics, including phase separations in polymer systems, electrokinetics of charged permeable surface coatings, and polymer brush coatings to control adsorption and adhesion of particles
  • Emphasis on inter-particle interactions and surface phenomena in (bio)nanotechnology
  • Full solutions to over 100 updated and additional exercises are presented in the Appendix

Focusing on physicochemical concepts that form the basis of understanding colloidal and interfacial phenomena—rather than on experimental methods and techniques—this book is an excellent primer for students and scientists interested in colloidal and interfacial phenomena, their mutual relations and connections, and the fascinating role they play in natural and man-made systems.

Table of Contents

Each chapter includes Exercises and Suggestions for Further Reading


Colloidal Domain

Interfaces Are Closely Related to Colloids

Colloid and Interface Science in a Historical Perspective

Classification of Colloidal Systems

Colloidal Particles: Shapes and Size Distributions


Particle Size Distributions

Average Molar Mass.

Specific Surface Area

Some Thermodynamic Principles and Relations, with Special Attention to Interfaces

Energy, Work, and Heat: The First Law of Thermodynamics

The Second Law of Thermodynamics: Entropy

Reversible Processes: Definition of Intensive Variables

Introduction of Other Functions of State: Maxwell Relations

Molar Properties and Partial Molar Properties: Dependence of the Chemical Potential on Temperature, Pressure, and Composition of the System

Criteria for Equilibrium: Osmotic Pressure

Phase Equilibria, Partitioning, Solubilization, and Chemical Equilibrium

Entropy of Mixing

Excess Nature of Interfacial Thermodynamic Quantities: The Gibbs Dividing Plane

Gibbs–Duhem Relation

Gibbs Adsorption Equation

Some Applications of the Gibbs Adsorption Equation

Nonideal Mixtures


Phenomenological Aspects of Water

Molecular Properties of Water

Water as a Solvent

Interfacial Tension

Interfacial Tension: Phenomenological Aspects.

Interfacial Tension as a Force: Mechanical Definition of Interfacial Tension

Interfacial Tension as an Interfacial (Gibbs) Energy: Thermodynamic Definition of Interfacial Tension

Operational Restrictions of Interfacial Tension

Interfacial Tension and the Works of Cohesion and Adhesion

Molecular Interpretation of Interfacial Tension

Curvature and Capillarity

Capillary Pressure: The Young–Laplace Equation

.Radii of Curvature

Some Consequences of Capillary Pressure

Curvature and Chemical Potential: Kelvin’s Law and Ostwald’s Law Curvature and Nucleation

Monolayers at Fluid Interfaces

The Interfacial Pressure.

Gibbs and Langmuir Monolayers: Equations of State.

Formation of Monolayers

Pressure–Area Isotherms of Langmuir Monolayers: Two-Dimensional Phases

Transfer of Monolayers to Solid Surfaces: Langmuir–Blodgett and Langmuir–Schaefer Films

Covalent Organic Monolayers

Wetting of Solid Surfaces

Contact Angle: Equation of Young and Dupré

Some Complications in the Establishment of the

Contact Angle: Hysteresis, Surface Heterogeneity, and Roughness

Wetting and Adhesion: Determination of Surface Polarity

Approximation of the Surface Tension of a Solid: The Critical Surface Tension of Wetting

Wetting by Solutions Containing Surfactants

Capillary Penetration

Some Practical Applications and Implications of Wetting: Impregnation, Flotation, Pickering Stabilization, and Cleansing

Electrochemistry of Interfaces

Electric Charge

Electric Potential

The Gibbs Energy of an Electrical Double Layer

Models for the Electrical Double Layer

Donnan Effect, Donnan Equilibrium, Colloidal Osmotic Pressure, and Membrane Potential Exercises

Electrokinetic Phenomena

The Plane of Shear: The Zeta Potential

Derivation of the Zeta Potential from Electrokinetic


Some Complications in Deriving the Zeta Potential

Interpretation of the Zeta Potential

Applications of Electrokinetic Phenomena

Self-Assembly of Amphiphilic Molecules

Self-Assembly as Phase Separation

Different Types of Self-Assembled Structures

Aggregation as a "Start–Stop" Process: Size and Shape of Self-Assembled Structures

Mass Action Model for Micellization

Factors That Influence the Critical Micelle Concentration

Bilayer Structures

Reverse Micelles


Self-Assembled Structures in Applications


Polymers in Solution

Conformations of Dissolved Polymer Molecules.

Coil-Like Polymer Conformations

Semi-Dilute and Concentrated Polymer Solutions


Phase Separations in Polymer Solutions: Complex Coacervation


Polymer Gels


The Amino Acids in Proteins

The Three-Dimensional Structure of Protein Molecules in Aqueous Solution

Noncovalent Interactions That Determine the Structure of a Protein Molecule in Water

Stability of Protein Structure in Aqueous Solution.

Thermodynamic Analysis of Protein Structure Stability

Reversibility of Protein Denaturation: Aggregation of Unfolded Protein Molecules


Adsorbent–Adsorbate Interactions

Adsorption Kinetics.

Adsorption Equilibrium

Binding of Ligands

Applications of Adsorption

Adsorption of (Bio)Polymers, with Special Emphasis on Globular Proteins

Adsorption Kinetics.

Morphology of the Interface

Relaxation of the Adsorbed Molecule

Adsorption Affinity: Adsorption Isotherm

Driving Forces for Adsorption of Globular Proteins

Reversibility of the Protein Adsorption Process: Desorption and Exchange

Competitive Protein Adsorption Exercises

Stability of Lyophobic Colloids against Aggregation

Forces Operating between Colloidal Particles

DLVO Theory of Colloid Stability

Influence of Polymers on Colloidal Stability.

Aggregation Kinetics

Morphology of Colloidal Aggregates

Rheology, with Special Attention to Dispersions and Interfaces

Rheological Properties

Classification of Materials Based on Their Rheological Behavior

Viscosity of Diluted Liquid Dispersions

Interfacial Rheology

Emulsions and Foams

Phenomenological Aspects

Emulsification and Foaming

Emulsion and Foam Stability.

Modulation of the Coarseness and Stability of Emulsions and Foams

Physicochemical Properties of Biological Membranes

Structure and Dynamics of Biomembranes

Electrochemical Properties of Biomembranes

Transport in Biological Membranes

Transmembrane Potential


Suggestions for Further Reading


A Qualitative Description of Biofilm Formation

Biological Surfaces

Physicochemical Models for Cell Deposition and Adhesion

Surface Modification to Reduce (Bio)Adhesion

General Thermodynamic Analysis of Particle Adhesion

About the Author

Willem Norde is Professor of Bionanotechnology at Wageningen University and Research Center, and Professor of Colloid and Interface Science at the University Medical Center Groningen and the University of Groningen, The Netherlands. His main research expertise is on interfacial behavior of proteins, biological cells and bacteria, as well as on encapsulation and release of functional ingredients in and from nanocapsules. He is author or coauthor of more than 240 scientific publications and coeditor of Physical Chemistry of Biological Interfaces (Marcel Dekker, 2000) and of Nanotechnology in the Agri-Food Sector (Wiley-VCH, 2011) and author of Colloids and Interfaces in Life Sciences (Marcel Dekker, 2003).

Willem Norde has taught various courses, such as Colloid an Interface Science, Biopolymers at Interfaces, Physics and Chemistry of Supramolecular Systems, and Chemical Thermodynamics. He is a member of the Royal Dutch Association of Chemists, the Dutch Association of Biotechnologists, and the International Association of Colloid and Interface Scientists.

Dr. Norde received the MSc (1969) and PhD (1976) degrees from Wageningen University, The Netherlands.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
MEDICAL / Biotechnology
SCIENCE / Biotechnology
SCIENCE / Chemistry / General
SCIENCE / Chemistry / Physical & Theoretical