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Phys Rev E Stat Nonlin Soft Matter Phys. 2013 Jan;87(1):012601. Epub 2013 Jan 16.

Bending elasticity of macromolecules: analytic predictions from the wormlike chain model.

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  • 1Raman Research Institute, Bangalore 560 080, India.


We present a study of the bend angle distribution of semiflexible polymers of short and intermediate lengths within the wormlike chain model. This enables us to calculate the elastic response of a stiff molecule to a bending moment. Our results go beyond the Hookean regime and explore the nonlinear elastic behavior of a single molecule. We present analytical formulas for the bend angle distribution and for the moment-angle relation. Our analytical study is compared against numerical Monte Carlo simulations. The functional forms derived here can be applied to fluorescence microscopic studies on actin and DNA. Our results are relevant to recent studies of "kinks" and cyclization in short and intermediate length DNA strands.

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