IJCsatellite IJCsatellite/physics

physics/0504140 http://arxiv.org/abs/physics/0504140

From: Vishwesha Guttal [view email]
Date: Wed, 20 Apr 2005 18:13:15 GMT   (71kb)

A Model for Folding and Aggregation in RNA Secondary Structures

Authors: Vishwesha Guttal, Ralf Bundschuh
Comments: Revtex, 4 Pages, 4 figures; Submitted to Phys. Rev. Lett
Subj-class: Biological Physics; Biomolecules; Statistical Mechanics

We study the statistical mechanics of RNA secondary structures designed to have an attraction between two different types of structures as a model system for heteropolymer aggregation. The competition between the branching entropy of the secondary structure and the energy gained by pairing drives the RNA to undergo a `temperature independent' second order phase transition from a molten to an aggregated phase'. The aggregated phase thus obtained has a macroscopically large number of contacts between different RNAs. The partition function scaling exponent for this phase is ?theta ~ 1/2 and the crossover exponent of the phase transition is ?nu ~ 5/3.

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