Polymer looping is controlled by macromolecular crowding, spatial confinement, and chain stiffness

Jaeoh Shin, Andrey G. Cherstvy, Ralf Metzler

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    67 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    We study by extensive computer simulations the looping characteristics of linear polymers with varying persistence length inside a spherical cavity in the presence of macromolecular crowding. For stiff chains, the looping probability and looping time reveal wildly oscillating patterns as functions of the chain length. The effects of crowding differ dramatically for flexible versus stiff polymers. While for flexible chains the looping kinetics is slowed down by the crowders, for stiffer chains the kinetics turns out to be either decreased or facilitated, depending on the polymer length. For severe confinement, the looping kinetics may become strongly facilitated by crowding. Our findings are of broad impact for DNA looping in the crowded and compartmentalized interior of living biological cells.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)202-206
    Number of pages5
    JournalACS Macro Letters
    Volume4
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 17 Feb 2015
    Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Publication forum classification

    • Publication forum level 2

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Organic Chemistry
    • Materials Chemistry
    • Polymers and Plastics
    • Inorganic Chemistry

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