Article: article from journal or magazin.
Predicting optimal lengths of random knots
Letters in Mathematical Physics
In a thermally fluctuating long linear polymeric chain in a solution, the ends, from time to time, approach each other. At such an instance, the chain can be regarded as closed and thus will form a knot or rather a virtual knot. Several earlier studies of random knotting demonstrated that simpler knots show a higher occurrence for shorter random walks than do more complex knots. However, up to now there have been no rules that could be used to predict the optimal length of a random walk, i.e. the length for which a given knot reaches its highest occurrence. Using numerical simulations, we show here that a power law accurately describes the relation between the optimal lengths of random walks leading to the formation of different knots and the previously characterized lengths of ideal knots of a corresponding type.
knots, polymers, scaling laws, DNA, random walks, biophysics
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