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Moving phase boundaries in DNA and coiled-coils control mechanical response

Ritwik Raj and Prashant K. Purohit

We use a 1D continuum model with a multi-well free energy to study the sequential unfolding of coiled-coil proteins and DNA characterized by force plateaus in their force-stretch response.

Coiled-coil proteins such as vimentin, desmin, lamin, etc., formintermediate filaments, which in turn, form cytoskeletal andmatrix networks. Diseases, such as, muscular dystrophy arecaused by deficient mechanical response of desmin.

Coiled-coil proteins such as vimentin, desmin, lamin, etc., form intermediate filaments, which in turn, form cytoskeletal and matrix networks. Diseases, such as, muscular dystrophy are caused by deficient mechanical response of desmin.

We have shown that force-plateaus in the mechanical response are caused bymoving interfaces between the folded and unfolded regions of the coiled-coil protein.

We have shown that force-plateaus in the mechanical response are caused by moving interfaces between the folded and unfolded regions of the coiled-coil protein.

Raj and Purohit, submitted to EPL, (2010).

 

 

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