Collège Doctoral - Doktorandenkollegien

Statistical Physics of Complex Systems

Coventry - Leipzig - Lviv - Nancy

PhD positions


Title Conformational analysis and estimation of the persistence length of DNA using atomic force microscopy in solution
Authors Mantelli S., Muller P., Harlepp S., Maaloum M.
Reference Soft Matter 7 (2011) 3412-3416
Abstract The worm-like chain model describes the mechanical properties of semi-flexible polymers by introducing a certain correlation length along the contour. This correlation length is called the persistence length. Using atomic force microscopy in solution, we performed measurements of the persistence length of DNA molecules. We found good agreement between the theoretical model and experimental data. However, the measured persistence length values in solution differ from those found by several authors using the same technique but in dry air. In order to determine the contribution of the electrostatic persistence length to the total persistence length, we varied the salt concentration. We found a large discrepancy between the Odijk, Skolnick and Fixman theory and our measurements. The effect of divalent ions and the omission in the theory of the dependence of non-electrostatic persistence length on salt concentration are qualitatively invoked.

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