Packing and crowding are used in biology as mechanisms to (self-)regulate internal molecular or cellular processes based on collective signaling. Here, we study how the transition kinetics of an internal “switch” of responsive macromolecules is modified collectively by their spatial packing. We employ Brownian dynamics simulations of a model of Responsive Colloids, in which an explicit internal degree of freedom—here, the particle size—moving in a bimodal energy landscape self-consistently responds to the density fluctuations of the crowded environment. We demonstrate that populations and transition times for the two-state switching kinetics can be tuned over one order of magnitude by “self-crowding.” An exponential scaling law derived from a combination of Kramers’ and liquid state perturbation theory is in very good agreement with the simulations.
Modulating internal transition kinetics of responsive macromolecules by collective crowding
Upayan Baul, Nils Göth, Michael Bley, Joachim Dzubiella; Modulating internal transition kinetics of responsive macromolecules by collective crowding. J. Chem. Phys. 28 December 2021; 155 (24): 244902. https://doi.org/10.1063/5.0076139
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