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Topological Rigidification of Flexible Polymers in Solution



Jack F. Douglas, Fernando Vargas-Lara


We use molecular dynamic simulations on a coarse-grained model for flexible polymers in solution to study how molecular topology affects the intrinsic rigidity of polymeric chains. In particular, we study how polymeric "topological complexity", defined by the minimum number of crossing in knotted polymers, m and polymer functionality, f , or arm number in regular star polymers, affects the chain rigidity measured through the determination of the chain persistence length, lp. We find that increasing these topological constraints leads to a progressive increase in lp. These topologically induced changes in rigidity, which also occur in the polymer melt state, have significant relevance for understanding the miscibility of topologically constrained polymers and regulating binding strength in biological macromolecules.
AIP Conference Proceedings


topology, topological rigidification, ring polymer, knots, star polymer, persistence length persistence length


Douglas, J. and Vargas-Lara, F. (2018), Topological Rigidification of Flexible Polymers in Solution, AIP Conference Proceedings (Accessed July 25, 2024)


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Created February 21, 2018, Updated January 4, 2022