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Phys Rev Lett. 2001 Mar 12;86(11):2459-62.

Transitions induced by the discreteness of molecules in a small autocatalytic system.

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Department of Basic Science, School of Arts and Sciences, University of Tokyo, Komaba, Meguro-ku, Tokyo 153-8902, Japan.


The autocatalytic reaction system with a small number of molecules is studied numerically by stochastic particle simulations. A novel state due to fluctuation and discreteness in molecular numbers is found, characterized as an extinction of molecule species alternately in the autocatalytic reaction loop. Phase transition to this state with changes of the system size and flow is studied, while a single-molecule switch of the molecule distributions is reported. The relevance of the results to intracellular processes is briefly discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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