Sébastien Neukirch
Institut Jean le Rond d'Alembert
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique
Université Pierre et Marie Curie
Paris, France

tel: +33 1 44 27 72 61
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e-mail: sebastien.neukirch (-atat-) upmc.fr

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Elastic and electrostatic model for DNA in rotation-extension experiments

Sébastien Neukirch, Nicolas Clauvelin and Basile Audoly

Proceedings of the IUTAM Symposium on Cellular, Molecular and Tissue Mechanics
Woods Hole, Mass., USA, June 18-21, 2008
Published in IUTAM Bookseries (Springer), Vol. 16 (2010)
Garikipati, Krishna; Arruda, Ellen M. (Eds.)
ISBN: 978-90-481-3347-5,

Abstract : We present a self-contained theory for the mechanical response of DNA in extension-rotation single molecule experiments. The theory is based on the elasticity of the double-helix and the electrostatic repulsion between two DNA duplex. The configuration of the molecule at large imposed rotation is assumed to comprise two phases, linear and superhelical DNA. Thermal fluctuations are accounted for in the linear phase and electrostatic repulsion is treated in the superhelical phase. This analytical model enables the computation of the supercoiling radius and angle of DNA during experiments. The torsional stress in the molecule and the slope of the linear region of the experimental curve are also predicted and compared successfully with experimental data.

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