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      Flexibility of short DNA helices under mechanical stretching

      1 , 2 , 3 , 4

      Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics

      Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC)

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          Abstract

          The flexibility of short DNA fragments is studied by a Hamiltonian model which treats the inter-strand and intra-strand forces at the level of the base pair.

          Abstract

          The flexibility of short DNA fragments is studied by a Hamiltonian model which treats the inter-strand and intra-strand forces at the level of the base pair. The elastic response of a set of homogeneous helices to externally applied forces is obtained by computing the average bending angles between adjacent base pairs along the molecular axis. The ensemble averages are performed over a room temperature equilibrium distribution of base pair separations and bending fluctuations. The analysis of the end-to-end distances and persistence lengths shows that even short sequences with less than 100 base pairs maintain a significant bendability ascribed to thermal fluctuational effects and kinks with large bending angles. The discrepancies between the outcomes of the discrete model and those of the worm-like-chain model are examined pointing out the inadequacy of the latter on short length scales.

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          Most cited references 89

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          Stretching DNA

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            Chromatin structure: a repeating unit of histones and DNA.

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              Direct mechanical measurements of the elasticity of single DNA molecules by using magnetic beads

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                PPCPFQ
                Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics
                Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys.
                Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC)
                1463-9076
                1463-9084
                2016
                2016
                : 18
                : 26
                : 17666-17677
                Affiliations
                [1 ]School of Science and Technology
                [2 ]University of Camerino
                [3 ]I-62032 Camerino
                [4 ]Italy
                Article
                10.1039/C6CP02981G
                699bc517-29e9-4b85-bf76-bf4657b8aafb
                © 2016
                Product
                Self URI (article page): http://xlink.rsc.org/?DOI=C6CP02981G

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