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Modelling and Simulation

Working Group 8.41

Publications 8.41

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Title: Alternative mechanisms of structuring biomembranes: self-assembly versus self-organization
Author(s): K. John and M. Bär
Journal: Physical review letters
Year: 2005
Volume: 95
Issue: 19
Pages: 198101
DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.95.198101
ISSN: 0031-9007
Web URL: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16384028
Keywords: 8.41,Algorithms,Cell Physiological Phenomena,Membrane Proteins,Membrane Proteins: chemistry,Membranes,Membranes: chemistry,Models, Statistical,Particle Size,Phosphorylation,Statistical
Tags: 8.41
Abstract: We study two mechanisms for the formation of protein patterns near membranes of living cells by mathematical modelling. Self-assembly of protein domains by electrostatic lipid-protein interactions is contrasted with self-organization due to a nonequilibrium biochemical reaction cycle of proteins near the membrane. While both processes lead eventually to quite similar patterns, their evolution occurs on very different length and time scales. Self-assembly produces periodic protein patterns on a spatial scale below 0.1 microm in a few seconds followed by extremely slow coarsening, whereas self-organization results in a pattern wavelength comparable to the typical cell size of 100 microm within a few minutes suggesting different biological functions for the two processes.

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