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Polymers 2016, 8(9), 328;

Stretching a Semiflexible Polymer in a Tube

Key Laboratory of Mechanics on Disaster and Environment in Western China, Ministry of Education, College of Civil Engineering and Mechanics, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730000, Gansu, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Martin Kröger
Received: 31 May 2016 / Revised: 9 August 2016 / Accepted: 26 August 2016 / Published: 9 September 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Semiflexible Polymers)
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How the statistical behavior of semiflexible polymer chains may be affected by force stretching and tube confinement is a classical unsolved problem in polymer physics. Based on the Odijk deflection theory and normal mode decomposition in terms of Fourier expansion, we have derived a new compact formula for the extension of a wormlike chain of finite length strongly confined in a tube and simultaneously stretched by an external force. We have also suggested a new deflection length, which together with the force-extension relation is valid for a very extended range of the tube-diameter/persistence-length ratio comparing to the classic Odijk theory. The newly derived formula has no adjustable fitting parameters for the whole deflection regime; in contrast, the classic Odijk length needs different prefactors to fit the free energy and average extension, respectively. Brownian dynamics simulations based on the Generalized Bead-Rod (GBR) model were extensively performed, which justified the theoretical predictions. View Full-Text
Keywords: wormlike chain model; tube confinement; Odijk length; stretch; GBR model; Brownian dynamics simulation wormlike chain model; tube confinement; Odijk length; stretch; GBR model; Brownian dynamics simulation

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Li, R.; Wang, J. Stretching a Semiflexible Polymer in a Tube. Polymers 2016, 8, 328.

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