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DNA loci cross-talk through thermodynamics

By Antonio Scialdone and Mario Nicodemi

Abstract

The recognition and pairing of specific DNA loci, though crucial for a plenty of important cellular processes, are produced by still mysterious physical mechanisms. We propose the first quantitative model from Statistical Mechanics, able to clarify the interaction allowing such “DNA cross-talk” events. Soluble molecules, which bind some DNA recognition sequences, produce an effective attraction between distant DNA loci; if their affinity, their concentration, and the relative DNA binding sites number exceed given thresholds, DNA colocalization occurs as a result of a thermodynamic phase transition. In this paper, after a concise report on some of the most recent experimental results, we introduce our model and carry out a detailed “in silico” analysis of it, by means of Monte Carlo simulations. Our studies, while rationalize several experimental observations, result in very interesting and testable predictions

Topics: QC
Publisher: Hindawi Publishing Corp.
Year: 2009
OAI identifier: oai:wrap.warwick.ac.uk:2159

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